cardiovascular, crisis intervention, curriculum, education, patient simulation



  1. Hravnak, Marilyn PhD, RN, ACNP-BC, FCCM, FAAN
  2. Beach, Michael MSN, RN, ACNP-BC
  3. Tuite, Patricia MSN, RN, CNS


Assisting nurses in gaining the cognitive and psychomotor skills necessary to safely and effectively care for patients with cardiovascular disease can be challenging for educators. Ideally, nurses would have the opportunity to synthesize and practice these skills in a protected training environment before application in the dynamic clinical setting. Recently, a technology known as high fidelity human simulation was introduced, which permits learners to interact with a simulated patient. The dynamic physiologic parameters and physical assessment capabilities of the simulated patient provide for a realistic learning environment. This article describes the High Fidelity Human Simulation Laboratory at the University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing and presents strategies for using this technology as a tool in teaching complex cardiac nursing care at the basic and advanced practice nursing levels. The advantages and disadvantages of high fidelity human simulation in learning are discussed.