A state-of-the-art $60,000 medical dummy used to practice emergency situations at BC Women’s Hospital provides a risk-free way for medical professionals to train in the art of birthing – but officials say donations are urgently needed to keep the program alive.

The dummy, nicknamed Beyonce by hospital staff shortly after this year’s Superbowl, is the medical version of a flight simulator.

The doll, which has a pulse and blood pressure, can breathe and talk – even telling her caregivers what’s hurting her.

Educators enter realistic emergencies and scenarios into a computer and the mechanized doll shows the corresponding symptoms, then reacts to treatment like real patients.

The birth team has to work together to deal with everything they're thrown.

“You get a lot of feedback from your attending [physician] and we run through the scenarios a few times over,” Dr. Ulrike Dehaeck, an Ob/Gyn resident, told CTV News.

Educator Dr. Paul Kliffer said the doll is an invaluable learning tool, especially with its moans, screams and complaints, voiced by another doctor.

“When you get emotionally involved you learn and you remember,” he said.

With 400 nurses and 150 doctors and midwives in the nursing program the doll gets a lot of use, but there’s only one of her.

Officials say a lack of simulation equipment at the hospital is hampering efforts to fully develop the simulation program, which they believe is critical to learning.

It’s hoping to get a range of dolls, from premature babies to newborns, so health care providers can train with them – ensuring they are prepared and able to give the best care possible to real patients.

BC Women’s Hospital estimates it needs up to $485,000 to complete its equipment needs, including a $50,000 birthing mom with premature baby, a $25,000 newborn baby doll and a $2,000 birthing simulator that mimics postpartum hemorrhage.

More than 7,000 babies are delivered at BC Women’s Hospital each year.

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