So an article on the BBC reports the creation of a new fine-tuned medical dummy – Desperate Debra – to teach doctors how to carry out emergency cesarean sections in late stage labor. Apparently it “teaches them the paradox between needing to use brute force and not do soft tissue damage.” Luckily, according to the article, it ‘only’ happens 15 times a day in the whole of the UK. Given surgical delivery overall has so many possible dangers and complications it’s a good thing they can practice!
As I am all for extensive training and improvement – I would like to suggest a few more models that could perhaps be useful:
Dilating Debbie – why not create a medical dummy to help prepare for the other 1,900 or so births in the U.K. each day? Basically a counterpart to her “desperate” alter ego, Dilating Debbie could be fitted with fetuses at varying weights from 5lbs through 9lbs so that doctors can practice their palpation skills and stop being so darn wrong about the size of the baby. An optional customized voice box, available in 763 languages, would say; ”I’m going to sit up to push now.”
Breech Bertha – simulating a breech birth as well as excellent training for twins. Bringing back the lost diagnosis of “NSVB-MW” (Normal Spontaneous Vaginal Birth-Mooning the World)
Recovery Rita – an anatomically correct model of postpartum, Recovery Rita sweats, cries, bleeds, urinates frequently, leaks milk and is completely sleep deprived. The silicone model responds positively to naps, shoulder rubs, showers, being fed, reassurance that she is doing a good job with her baby, and 1 year full paid leave from work that can be split between parents.
I don’t want to make light of the few who need true medical emergency c-sections. Obviously it’s frightening for everyone involved. However if we’ve got the money, time and silicone to invest in training, let’s not forget the majority.