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problem solving software
Emergency Room 3 simulates a medical intern's residency experience in a hospital emergency room. The software targets a high-school and early college age audience.
When the program begins, the user takes on the persona of a medical intern. The intern must select a medical case that she wants to treat. Once she has read the case history, the software provides a database in which the intern can research the most useful diagnosis and treatment procedures for the case she has chosen. The intern then checks vital signs and the area of complaint, treats the patient, prescribes appropriate medication, and recommends follow-up care. One word of caution - some of the cases are of a gory nature (e.g. a matador with a bull horn through the eye, a hari-kari suicide attempt).
The intern receives a score for each treatment she attempts. The head of the ward evaluates her performance. If the intern asks a nurse for advice, she loses points. Providing unnecessary care results in point deduction. A low score may cause the ER to lose its residency program. Bonus points are available for providing care rapidly.
Emergency Room 3 does not include anatomy charts or animated models of the circulatory and nervous systems and cellular processes. The exclusion of these materials is an unfortunate because kids would pay attention to such information if they required it for attending immediately to someone's poor health.
The relationships between doctors, nurses, patients and interns in Emergency Room 3 are combative. None of these groups seems to be working in partnership; most people presented in the program are terse and sarcastic. The software does not train the user to cooperate and ask for help, though both skills are essential in a high-stakes workplace such as the ER. The program encourages interns to judge their success based on whether they receive promotions or contribute to the residency program at the ER. Ideally, the program would encourage interns to estimate their success based on the experience and evaluations of patients and their families.
A biology teacher may want to use this software for a few periods in her classroom after she teaches units on anatomy and physiology. The software will allow students to apply their newly-acquired knowledge.
PC: Windows 95/98, 233 MHz Pentium or faster cpu, 32MB RAM, High color/16bit capable 2MB video card & display, 16X or faster CD-ROM, sound card .return to top of page
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