Tampa Bay media preview USF Health CAMLS

Tampa Bay area media got their first look Wednesday at USF Health’s new Center for Advanced Medical Learning and Simulation (CAMLS), a first-of-its-kind center on a fast track to become a national model for transforming the education, training and assessment of health professionals based on competence.

The $38-million three-story facility, which covers a full city block in downtown Tampa, opened for business last week and already has hundreds of bookings for courses and events by learners and stakeholders.  The grand opening ceremony will be held next month.

Journalists were greeted in the CAMLS lobby by Dr. Deborah Sutherland, CEO of CAMLS. The center, which provides a presence for USF in downtown Tampa, is expected to draw 30,000 visitors to the region each year and projected to have a $5 to $6 million annual economic impact in the Tampa Bay area, Dr. Sutherland said.

Then, it was time for a preview of several core components inside – the Surgical Intervention and Training Center headed by Dr. John Armstrong, the Virtual Patient Care Center headed by Dr. Laura Haubner, and the Tampa Bay Research and Innovation Center headed by Dr. Stuart Hart.  They were joined on the “sneak peek” tour by Dr. Stephen Klasko, CEO of USF Health and dean of the Morsani College of Medicine.

The unprecedented scope of learning resources assembled under one roof at CAMLS — realistic simulators, surgical stations, robotics, team training rehearsal theaters, standardized patients, and virtual hospital rooms and retail pharmacies, to name a few – have one overarching purpose, the CAMLS leaders emphasized to the media audience.  That is to  elevate healthcare quality and improve patient safety by making sure physicians, nurses and other healthcare professionals can perform at their peak  as individuals and on teams.

“In the past doctors, nurses and other health professionals trained separately. That’s like the Orlando Magic players practicing in separate gyms and then all showing up for the same game.”

– Dr. Stephen Klasko, CEO of USF Health and dean of the Morsani College of Medicine

“This is the only hybrid operating room on the planet used solely for education and training.”

– Dr. John Armstrong, CAMLS chief medical officer and trauma surgeon

“A simple thing like miscommunication, which often encompasses lack of teamwork and interprofessional skills, can equate to a delay in getting proper care.  In a situation with an infant, a delay of minutes or even seconds can become critical.”

– Laura Haubner, medical director of the Virtual Patient Care Center and neonatologist.

“We can work with business and industry to fabricate and develop prototypes and then test the medical device or technology in real-life scenarios. The capabilities here are far reaching and will put USF and Tampa Bay on the map.”

– Dr. Stuart Hart,  medical director of the Tampa Bay Research & Innovation Center

Dr. Deborah Sutherland, CEO of CAMLS, is interviewed by an audiovisual journalist.

 Photos by Eric Younghans, video by Amy Mariani and story by Anne DeLotto Baier, USF Health Communications