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    State-of-the-art immersive learning suite to provide skills boost to healthcare sector

    13 May 2024

    Health and Social Care learners at Burton and South Derbyshire College will benefit from a new Training Ward as part of a series of innovative facilities made possible through £3.5 million funding from the Government’s Stronger Town Fund.

    The replica hospital ward has been named the ‘Noreen Oliver Innovation Ward’ in memory of College Fellow and founder of the Burton Addiction Centre and O’Connor Gateway Trust, Noreen Oliver MBE, Hon.DLit. Noreen was a tireless champion for vulnerable individuals, dedicating her life to helping people recover from addiction and rebuild their lives. She was a passionate advocate of innovation in health and care and was unwavering in her focus and determination to help those most in need.

    The ward was opened officially on Monday 13th May and was attended by Noreen’s family and friends, who had the opportunity to speak to students and see Noreen’s continued legacy at the college.

    The Noreen Oliver Innovation Ward is part of the College’s new Health Simulation Suite which features a replica hospital ward with three beds, a nurse’s station and specialist equipment, in partnership with University Hospitals of Derby, Burton NHS Foundation Trust and Staffordshire University. The facilities include an Immersive Interactive Simulation Suite with virtual reality technology, interactive 3D graphics and audio content to provide a multi-sensory learning environment.

    Using simulation manikins, students will be able to replicate illnesses and practice a range of skills undertaken in hospital settings, including connecting IVs and taking blood pressure. The room will be fitted with cameras and microphones, allowing tutors and students to review the training and identify areas for improvement.

    In addition, the College’s Health Simulation Suite features a mock care home environment with a living room, bedroom and washing facilities, as well as equipment such as hoists, slings, sliding boards, patient lifts and simulation manikins. The walls have been installed at half height to ensure learners and teachers can fully engage and communicate while working in a realistic environment.

    Burton and South Derbyshire College offers a range of health and social care related courses, including T-Levels and university level courses, giving students the skills and experience to start their careers in the industry.

    Dawn Ward CBE DL, Chief Executive of BSDC said: “The opening of the Noreen Oliver Ward at BSDC is a significant moment for our college and the wider community. Through immersive learning experiences in our Health Simulation Suite, students will not only gain vital skills, but they will develop compassion for their patients, resilience within the workplace and a determination to help those most in need. All of these characteristics were displayed by Noreen throughout her life and in her many achievements. This facility stands as a testament to her lifelong commitment to helping others, ensuring her legacy lives on in every student who passes through these doors."

    Contact Details

    Contact Details

    Burton and South Derbyshire College
    Tel: 01283 494400

    Town Centre Campus

    Burton Town Centre Campus, Lichfield Street, Burton on Trent, Staffordshire DE14 3RL

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