In a fully equipped operating theatre at the German Heart Institute in Berlin trainee surgeons, anaesthetists and cardio technicians practise open heart surgery on a sophisticated dummy. A Geutebruck hybrid recorder stores video, audio and theatre equipment data, while streaming it in real time to the trainer in the control room and to fellow students in a lecture theatre. With a special medical torso, complete with beating heart and simulated responses to different drug treatments and interventions, theatre teams practise new procedures and learn how to cope with the unexpected without endangering real patients.
The re_porter-based video system installed by Berlin-based Alarmsysteme Richter & Co. GmbH is key to the training process. It enables an instructor to realistically control the dummy and the operating theatre equipment remotely; it allows operations to be observed live and in close-up from a nearby lecture theatre; and it enables participants to subsequently review and analyse their actions so they learn more.
A GSD-671 high resolution indoor dome camera focuses on the operation site, while a megapixel camera provides pictures of the surrounding activity. Aided by video pictures and sound, the medical trainer in the control room controls the machinery and events in the theatre by mouse click on a screen and by talking to the surgical team via their headsets. He generates situations which put the patient in danger and the surgical team under pressure. Better, it is argued, to learn here what to do if the heart-lung machine breaks down than to meet the situation for the first time with a real patient on the operating table.
In the nearby lecture theatre other trainees observe with live pictures, sound and data from the theatre equipment as well as a commentary from a lecturer.
Although the re_porter is a product with high-end technology designed for security applications it Alarmsysteme Richter and Co.'s choice for media and presentation systems projects too. "Where high quality solutions are required it can't be beaten on performance or price," reports Mr Richter. "We have been doing an increasing amount of business in this area and use re_porter because it provides excellent value for money."