Birthing robots give UCF students hands-on experience

Birthing robots give UCF students hands-on experience

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — Orlando Health and third-year UCF medical students are teaming up to practice delivering babies on a simulator patient, a robot.

A $100,000 simulation patient at Orlando Health gives birth as if it’s a real-life person.

"Inside we have our baby. There's the baby's placenta stuck to the side of her electronic uterus, as it were," J.J. Becker with Orlando Health Simulation Center told Channel 9's Jamie Holmes.

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The robot, named Victoria, can bleed. There is an umbilical cord and everything else that a pregnant woman goes through before and after birth.

"Being able to do it in a simulated environment allows the student to be able to ask questions, without being afraid. It also allows them to be nervous and sweat it out here,” said Dr. Aileen Caceres of the UCF College of Medicine.

The robot can be programmed for some two dozen different scenarios. Labors can go smoothly or not, like excessive bleeding or breech births.

"We can program that any way we like. So she can be progressing nicely and then stall awhile, and then start progressing again. She can have a precipitous labor, where the baby just shoots out,” Becker said.

For the students, the next step is the real deal with real patients.

"You can really get your hands dirty?" Holmes asked.

"I mean, your hands are literally dirty,” said Karen Lu, a third-year medical student.