The U.S. Department of Agriculture gave $1.6 million to two institutions to improve health in the Arkansas Delta area by providing on-site simulation training for rural providers. The Greater Delta Alliance for Health got $752,832, a little more than a third of which will be to contract with the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) and its Centers for Simulation Education to educate rural hospitals about a variety of situations, including birthing problems; trauma, such as tractor accidents; diabetic complications; pediatric emergencies; and stroke.

The Black River Technical College in Pocahontas got $919,139 to purchase and upgrade simulation equipment and provide clinical training.

Some of the remaining grant funds will purchase training manikins, other simulation equipment and a van to transport the equipment. The rest of the grant will pay for 30 firefighters in the Arkansas Delta to become certified EMTs.

The training that will be provided by UAMS is a part of the alliance’s Arkansas Delta Health Education for Local Providers (HELP) Program that was expanded this year to include on-site simulation training for rural health and hospital teams for obstetrical emergency situations and Neonatal Resuscitation Program (NRP) certification training to hospital delivery teams, other hospital medical staff members, pre-hospital providers, inter-facility transport providers, and emergency department staff.