Volunteers in masks ran toward Florida Atlantic University emergency medicine residents pretending to be suffering from the coronavirus during a simulated disaster scenario in Coconut Creek Tuesday.
The setup involved a few dozen volunteers acting as if they just got off a cruise ship where they contracted the virus. The residents had to prioritize which patients were critical and needed immediate attention, and separate them into groups based on priority. Residents wore full hazmat suits during the drill.
“They had to deal with a scenario where everyone’s freaking out and they have to stay controlled," volunteer Aya Zabib said. "They handled it pretty well."
“A lot of patients coming at us at the same time and the tough part is trying to triage each one and figure out who is the sickest,” said FAU emergency resident physician Daniel Parks.
The hands-on experience helped the residents prepare to tackle the threat of a possible contagion. Nurses and paramedics also took park to help teach the residents how to triage and treat the “victims."
When the simulation was over, everyone took part in a debriefing to discuss what they learned, what went well and what needed improvement. Everyone hopes this training is never needed in real life when it comes to coronavirus, but if it is, they’ll be ready.