NGT/NT Suction Task Trainer

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  • Title

    NGT/NT Suction Task Trainer
  • Submitted By

    Mary Leigh, MSN, RN
  • HomeGrown Solution Number

  • Identification of the Problem

    I first thought of this idea when the clinical sites decided to close to students. Virtual simulation was the alternative for clinical hours, however, this did not help the students develop their psychomotor skills.

    Additionally, this concept could be adapted for use in skills labs to allow social distancing while reducing the need to purchase additional manikins.

  • Unique Idea

    I wanted an inexpensive alternative for nursing students to make, in their own garage, to be able to practice their skills outside of the skills lab during Covid-19.

  • Objectives

    This task trainer, when used in conjunction with skills checklist, will allow the student to perfect psychomotor skills in the following areas:

    • NGT placement, medication administration, decompression
    • NT suctioning
    • Optional tracheal suctioning and associated trach care
  • Supplies/Ingredients

    1. White foam wig head ($10.00) available at most large craft stores
    2. Halloween mask (non-descript, $15.00)
    3. Flexible plastic tubing (approximately 1 ft)
    4. Eyes printed on color printer 
    5. PVC pipe (approximately 2-3 ft, depending on set up)
    6. Cuffed trach with inner cannula, trach ties
    7. Drain sponge
    8. Plastic jug with opening large enough to accommodate the PVC pipe size
    9. Paddle bit to match size of PVC pipe 
    10. Drill bit to match size of flexible plastic tubing, hacksaw blade
  • Steps to Creating the Solution

    1. Use hacksaw to cut away a section of the head that allows access to the back of the nose and down the throat area (see image 1). Use the paddle bit, no drill required, to make a hole for the throat. Use the drill bit to make a hole up the nostril and into the open area at the back of the wig head (image 2)
    2. Feed the flexible tubing up through the throat and curve it down through the nostril. This tubing will later feed into the PVC pipe.
    3. Using a color printer, print eyes of the appropriate size. This make take a few tries. Cut the eyes out, leaving a large margin. Cut slits from the outer edge to the middle to help it lay flat against the curved wig head. Glue eyes in place, being careful not to use too much or the ink may run.
    4. Cut a slit in the mask up the back of the neck to the crown. This allows for easy placement of the mask onto the wig head. Position the mask to match up with the eyes and nose. I didn't glue the mask to the wig head. The nostril lined up fairly well. A bad angle will send the tube out the eye socket, a good angle will allow the tube to pass into the nare of the wig head. The tube should travel easily up and curving into the PVC pipe. Place the head, onto the PVC, feeding the flexible tubing down inside. Place the PVC into a gallon jug filled half way with water. This weighs down the base, gives the medications a place to go, and provides gastric secretions for decompression.
    5. Optional trach. Cut a small X in the appropriate area of the neck and insert a cuffed trach through the hole. Install a trach tie and split drain sponge. To simulate actual suctioning, use small diameter PVC with the appropriate end cap. Place the cuffed trach into the PVC and inflate the cuff to seal. Attach the trach PVC to the throat PVC for support. Introduce simulated secretions into the trach.


  • suction task trainer 1
  • suction task trainer 2
  • suction task trainer 3
  • suction task trainer 4