ED simulation educating students on the impact of alcohol and risk related trauma

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Students from Chinchilla State High School observing an emergency department simulation.

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Education and prevention play a crucial role in ensuring the safety and wellbeing of young people. The Prevent Alcohol and Risk-Related Trauma in Youth (P.A.R.T.Y) program held at Toowoomba Hospital has been making a significant impact on 15 to 19-year-olds across our region for the past eight years.

Through a combination of interactive simulated clinical scenarios and guest speakers, students gain a deeper understanding of the potential consequences of their actions. The program provides a unique opportunity to meet healthcare professionals, emergency services staff, and individuals who have experienced trauma firsthand. By sharing their stories, these individuals emphasize the importance of making responsible choices to avoid life-altering injuries.

Toowoomba Hospital Emergency Department Associate Nurse Unit Manager Dani Williams is the local program coordinator and passionate advocate for the program.

“Across Australia, young people are disproportionately affected by traumatic injuries with statistics showing they are overrepresented in both death and long-term disabilities caused by accidents and road trauma,” Ms Williams said.

“The program aims to address this by providing students with firsthand experiences and education on the potential consequences of risky behaviours.

“Attending a P.A.R.T.Y program is an eye-opening experience for students. It encourages them to think twice before engaging in dangerous activities.”

Toowoomba Hospital Emergency Department Associate Nurse Unit Manager Dani Williams

Chinchilla State High School Head of Year Jacinta Mead was part of the most recent cohort.

“The P.A.R.T.Y program is powerful and impacted both our staff and students in attendance. One parent emailed me the next day to say their child had said that night they were no longer interested in drinking after learning about the dangers,” Ms Mead said.

“We definitely want to book again and continue this vital health education for the young people in our rural community.”

The P.A.R.T.Y program is open to schools across Queensland. To participate in the P.A.R.T.Y. program, schools can express their interest now for the 2024 school year by contacting the Statewide P.A.R.T.Y. office to make a booking.