Fly on the wall video gives students insight into cardiac care

Students from Castletroy College attending the launch of the STEMI Patient Journey video. Photo: Brian Arthur.

SECONDARY school students curious about a career in healthcare are being invited to accompany a heart attack patient on a virtual journey from his 999 call, through a life-saving intervention in the cath lab at UHL, and onto rehabilitation and recovery.

The interactive educational video, an initiative of the Junior Health Sciences Academy (JHSA), has been launched at UHL with the help of transition year (TY) students from Coláiste Chiaráin, Gaelcholáiste Luimnigh, Thomond Community College, and Castletroy College.

The JHSA is a partnership between the University of Limerick, UL Hospitals Group, and HSE Mid West Community Healthcare. It supports second level students in early careers, health promotion, and leadership.

TY students from across Limerick, Tipperary, and Clare have participated in JHSA careers events in recent years. Feedback from the students and TY co-ordinators demonstrated students were very keen to see a fly-on-the-wall view of healthcare professionals at work in the clinical setting.

The result is the “STEMI: Patient Journey” video now available as an educational resource on the website of the Health Sciences Academy.

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Filmed in Limerick with staff working in their actual environments, the interactive video follows a patient who experiences chest pain, through to his transfer via ambulance to UHL cath lab for stenting of the artery, to the coronary care unit and finally to cardiac rehab. The video has numerous information points, staff role information, and course information on where to study.

The cardiology department at University Hospital Limerick is one of five nationally designated heart attack centres that provide 24/7 care for cardiac emergencies.

Each year it receives approximately 250 STEMI (ST-elevated myocardial infarction) calls, where patients with a blocked artery are brought directly to the cath lab to insert a stent.

Miriam McCarthy, Health Sciences Academy, said: “Students told us they were curious to see what staff do in their roles and what the clinical environment looks like. The video also includes key health promotion messages on how to look after your heart”.

“This video includes profiles of real people working in these roles in our region and how students can find out more about where they can pursue these careers in college, most of them right here in Limerick,” said Ms McCarthy.