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Wheeling University Nursing Majors Getting Hands on Respiratory Training in Simulations Lab

Monday, January 27, 2020 9:53 AM
WU News


Wheeling University junior and senior nursing students are receiving hands on, respiratory care training inside the simulation lab to learn how to best treat patients.

According to Marybeth Emmerth, MS, RRT, CPFT, Wheeling University’s associate professor of respiratory therapy, the nursing students spent several days a week last semester in the sim lab to learn and be comfortable placing patients on oxygen. To achieve this goal, the students received instruction in oxygen therapy and indications and contraindications for use of oxygen, how to properly use various oxygen devices, and how to take patient and device precautions.

“Several therapies, used by respiratory therapists to help with the mobilization, retrieval or clearance of one’s secretions if they are unable to cough effectively, were taught and then practiced by all the nursing students. The student nurses also practiced tracheostomy, treatment of the tracheostomy incision, and how to perform open and closed suctioning techniques,” Emmerth explained.

Senior nursing students received advance instruction on how to manually ventilate a patient. In addition, the nursing students learned about hemodynamic stability, cardiac pressure monitoring and metabolic measurements, which may be done by the RT, nurse or both.

“The instruction and lectures have allowed our nursing students to see first-hand how that in an intensive care unit a ‘team approach’ is a necessity to provide the best care possible for your patients,” she added.    

Additional lectures and instruction inside the sim lab will be provided to nursing majors this semester, she said. All WU health science majors will participate in the University’s health majors Interprofessional Education/Cooperation Day where the students work in teams, alongside practicing health professionals, to solve a patient care scenario.

Emmerth noted, “This event has provided our students with real world experience in how to work in teams to develop the best possible plan to meet a patient’s health care needs. We make sure to develop a comprehensive care plan that covers the patients physical, emotional, spiritual and psychological needs.” 

“It’s wonderful to see our faculty take a team approach in classroom instruction,” said Ginny Favede, Wheeling University president. “The training that our nursing students received in respiratory therapy treatments will allow them to better care for patients upon graduation.”


Founded in 1954, Wheeling University is the only Catholic institution of higher learning in West Virginia. Its mission is to provide a high-quality Catholic education to the men and women of the Ohio Valley region and beyond. By integrating education, research, and economic development with classical knowledge and Christian revelation, Wheeling University seeks to equip its graduates with the critical, creative, and empathetic tools they need to pursue rewarding careers and enrich their local communities.