• Florida

    Mayo Clinic Simulation Center Opens as State-of-the-Art Training for Medical Teams and Community

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Medical teams and community organizations can learn and practice medical skills in a safe, highly realistic environment with the opening of the Mayo Clinic J. Wayne and Delores Barr Weaver Simulation Center at Mayo Clinic in Florida.

In the Weaver Simulation Center, medical teams can practice everything from basic skills to the most complicated scenarios with stunning realism, before patients ever need care.

The center is part of a two-story addition to the Vincent A. Stabile Building. It occupies 9,600 square feet, with space to expand. A $7 million gift from J. Wayne and Delores Barr Weaver, along with gifts from other benefactors, made the center possible.

"Through medical simulation, we can provide interactive, hands-on training that enhances the safety of our patients and staff," says William C. Rupp, M.D., chief executive officer of Mayo Clinic in Florida. "Our community is so fortunate to have the Weavers, who care so deeply about advancing the health and well-being of all our residents."

Practicing Medicine Safely

Simulation has become vital in industries from aviation to health care, where multidisciplinary teams are using advanced technology.


  • Helps people become better and faster at performing fundamental skills.
  • Enhances teamwork, confidence and safety.
  • Creates opportunities to safely test innovative ideas and techniques.

"We envision our facility as the premier simulation center in the Southeast," says center Medical Director and urologist David Thiel, M.D. "The Florida center also can link with Mayo's simulation centers in Minnesota and Arizona to function as one center, so we can share knowledge across our community, region and nation."

When William Palmer, M.D., and his team of nurses and therapists at Mayo Clinic experienced four Code Blue cardiac arrest emergencies in one night, they knew exactly what to do, because they had practiced with simulation equipment on campus prior to the center's opening.

The team successfully administered nearly 15,000 chest compressions, three airway intubations, and 14 cardioversion (heart shock) treatments. Every patient survived.

"Simulation provides an environment where we can push ourselves in complicated cases and practice so we minimize risk for the patient," Dr. Palmer says.

The center can be used by all staff to practice safe, effective and efficient care, such as:

  • Housekeeping skills
  • Nursing skills
  • Safe lifting and moving of patients
  • Emergency scenarios
  • Complex surgeries
  • Sensitive conversations with patients

State-of-the-Art Learning Environment

The center's rooms replicate actual spaces at Mayo Clinic in Florida and include an:

    • Operating room
    • Intensive care unit
    • Emergency medicine suite
    • Inpatient room
    • Outpatient room
    • Control rooms where instructors can manipulate

each simulation's complexity

"Patients" are interactive and include trained actors, as well as highly advanced mannequins that can talk, sweat, bleed and exhibit symptoms such as heart palpitations and pupil dilation.

Advanced equipment includes:

  • Robotic surgery skill simulation
  • Complex laparoscopic surgery simulation
  • Colonoscopy simulation
  • Ultrasound simulation with real-time interactive capabilities
  • Virtual dissection table
  • Radiographic table and lead shielding for fluoroscopy and other imaging techniques
  • Video recording capability

A Community Resource

The Weaver Simulation Center will also serve as a learning resource for community organizations, nursing programs, and high school students interested in learning more about medical careers.

Its 60-seat learning center is available for medical teams to watch and evaluate simulations, and for community groups to conduct educational programs.

"Delores and I believe that simulation training will have a tremendous impact on improving the overall quality of health care in Jacksonville," J. Wayne Weaver says.

"We look forward to seeing organizations in the community sharing this resource and benefiting from Mayo Clinic's expertise," Delores Barr Weaver says.