Working in the clinical skills labs

Carla Sowinski

By Carla Sowinski, Clinical Skills Technician, Faculty of Health, Education, Medicine and Social Care

As the Clinical Skills Technician working in the School of Nursing and Midwifery in Cambridgeshire, I am responsible for ensuring that the clinical skills labs, equipment and consumables at the Cambridge and Peterborough campuses are available and in working order.

The clinical skills labs within the School of Nursing and Midwifery contain realistic features such as hospital beds and manikins that are used for patient simulation. There are also many training models and consumables that are used to provide realistic clinical practice for skills such as catheterisation, cannulation and injection technique.

Dummies lying in hospital beds in ARU's Clinical Skills Lab

I have previously worked in a clinical capacity. I have completed the Level 3 Award in Health and Safety in the Workplace and the Level 3 Award in Education and Training. I have also delivered First Aid at Work courses, therefore a role working in a clinical teaching environment allowed me to utilise my existing knowledge and skills to support the delivery of healthcare courses.

My understanding of clinical equipment and practices has proved very beneficial and this insight has enabled me to provide wide ranging support to the academic staff within the School of Nursing and Midwifery.

My role can be very diverse and involves working with many teams within ARU such as IT Services, Risk Management, Timetabling, Finance, Estates and Marketing. The School of Nursing and Midwifery delivers many pre-registration and post-registration courses and there is a busy clinical skills schedule throughout the academic year. Every day is different and there can be quite a high workload, so the ability to be organised and prioritise tasks is essential.

I have initiated the upgrade of many systems, such as the recording system that is used for simulations and assessments. I have created online storage systems for skills teaching resources and a logical storage solution for all equipment and consumables to enable efficient stock checking and preparation for skills sessions. I have also been involved in the development of the clinical skills areas and facilities at the new ARU Peterborough university, which is due to open in September 2022.

A dummy woman in a birthing pool and a dummy baby in a cot in ARU's Clinical Skills Lab



Carla is a Clinical Skills Technician at ARU. Find out more about our Technician Commitment, explore our nursing and midwifery courses, and explore our Health, Education, Medicine and Social Care facilities.