By: Allison F. Perry
What better way to demonstrate important patient safety tools and methodologies than through simulation?
The idea to bring simulation to our patient safety meeting came from Dr. Jeffrey B. Cooper, a pioneer in health care simulation and executive director emeritus of the Center for Medical Simulation in Boston. We started with the basics: What do patient safety professionals need to know about simulation and what can they easily bring back to their organizations, especially if they don’t already have a simulation department? The excitement and engagement garnered from the experience came naturally with the novelty of having live demonstrations at an otherwise didactic health care meeting, and the learning outcomes laid the foundation for the next decade of integrating simulation into our Patient Safety Congress.
Since that first meeting in 2010, our Safety Congress has integrated simulation into the exhibit hall every year, growing and advancing the curriculum as the fields of simulation and patient safety knowledge have grown and evolved. We have provided half-day and all-day immersion workshops that have offered unique learning opportunities, ranging from Simulation 101 to building a simulation center from the ground up. We have also offered several plenary addresses that have demonstrated the use of simulation while providing opportunities for participant engagement.
Yes, it is possible to get a room of more than 800 people involved in a simulation scenario on stage! In our programs, we addressed key safety topics like patient and family engagement, teamwork and communication, disclosure and apology, shared decision-making, root cause analysis and action, and more. IHI/NPSF’s utilization of simulation as a teaching technique extends well beyond clinical techniques and skills-based training (e.g., shoulder dystocia and central line placement) to include training in broader issues such as leadership and board engagement and education and how to use simulation to educate and train patients and family members.
For almost 10 years now, IHI/NPSF has worked tirelessly to cultivate the groundwork laid by Dr. Cooper. The result is a space available to learners that allows them to interact and apply core patient safety knowledge in meaningful and comprehensive ways. Our ultimate goal is to create a pathway toward spanning the boundaries of each discipline and their mutual passion and commitment to patients, families, and the health care workforce. As we continue to develop and grow our simulation program, I encourage you to think about how you can use simulation to tackle a pertinent patient safety issue or problem. In Part II of this two-part series, I will share methods that you can adopt to foster networks of communication and collaboration between patient safety and simulation teams within your organization or learning networks.
McGaghie, W. C., Draycott, T. J., Dunn, W .F., Lopez, C.M, & Stefanidid, D. (2011). Evaluating the impact of simulation on translational patient outcomes. Simulation in Healthcare, 6 (Suppl), S42-S47.
Salas, E, Paige, J.T., & Rosen, M. A. (2013). Creating new realities in healthcare: the status of simulation-based training as a patient safety improvement strategy. BMJ Quality and Safety, 22, 449-452.