The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have met staff and students who demonstrated how the £59 million building is transforming training opportunities for nurses, paramedics, midwives and other health professionals.
The Royal couple followed the route of a fictional patient and witnessed students taking part in hands-on simulations within the facility’s ambulance, hospital wards and operating theatre. These practical experiences are designed to replicate the situations students could face in their future careers – but using actors or simulators instead of real patients.
The Duke and Duchess also saw inside one of two houses incorporated into the building that aim to give students realistic experiences of working within people’s homes and are equipped with some of the latest assistive living and augmented reality technologies.
The facility, which opened for teaching in October, is the only one of its kind where students will be able to train to care for a patient at every stage of their medical experience: from paramedics arriving at their home and their subsequent ambulance journey, to their stay in hospital, through to discharge and rehabilitation.
This was an important day for our staff, students, our partners and the city of Coventry
The building is not only about training for those on healthcare courses, but brings all of Coventry University’s Faculty of Health and Life Sciences’ practical facilities under one roof for the first time, including professional-standard laboratories and Olympic-grade fitness and sports research areas.
A laboratory, called Lab+, is the first industry-grade education-based laboratory of its kind in the country, and can host more than 250 students at once. Sports research and teaching facilities include an environmental chamber that can simulate the altitude of Mount Everest, a running track, biomechanics area and 3D motion capture camera equipment. There is also a sports therapy clinic which is open to the public.
John Latham, Vice-Chancellor of Coventry University, said: “It was an honour for everyone involved in the day to show the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge how our new Science and Health Building immerses students in the realities of their profession.
“We were proud to demonstrate the innovative teaching and hands-on activities that are transforming the experiences of our nursing and healthcare students. Their Royal Highnesses opening the building marked a new phase in our commitment to offer some of the finest healthcare teaching in the UK. This was an important day for our staff, students, our partners and the city of Coventry.”