HIEC Simulation Theme

Roger Kneebone (2009) "Simulation should be viewed as a parallel universe which mirrors and augments actual practice; it should place the learner at the centre of the process while ensuring patients do not experience avoidable harm. Mapping the dynamic association between the virtual reality centre, the simulated operating suite, and the real environment should become a priority for researchers and healthcare professionals"

Simulation in medical education and training comes in many forms, including simulated patients, mannequins and virtual reality. It provides opportunities for students and health professionals to practise clinical and interpersonal skills before using these skills on real patients.

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To develop simulation as an educational method for training the West Midlands workforce and improving patient safety, especially in the areas of chronic kidney disease and orthopaedics.


1. To use the HIEC partnership to build on existing work which has identified the landscape of simulation across the West Midlands.

2. To develop accreditation and quality assurance for training where simulation is used.

3. To facilitate collaboration between local and specialist simulation centres.

4. To lead the development of multi-professional learning, patient and carer learning, team learning and testing of new devices

5. To identify cost benefits of using simulation for relevant training of the workforce and patients and carers in moving care closer to home.

6. To facilitate the development of expertise of simulation providers.

Simulation theme progress to date

1. We have met with representatives from four Acute Trusts to explore how simulation methods could help improve patient care in chronic kidney disease.

2. We have met with industry contacts to develop a simulated AV fistula to help patients learn self-care when on home haemodialysis – a request from all four Trusts.

3. We are responding to requests from one Trust to develop communication training for new renal nurses, using simulated patients/carers, to improve discussions involving making decisions about treatment modality.

4. We are conducting an RCT together with the Royal Orthopaedic Hospital Birmingham to evaluate the impact of using simulated patients to teach medical students to carry out musculoskeletal examinations on patients.

5. A working group has been set up to develop accreditation for simulation providers. A draft set of documentation for accreditation skills has been agreed and a multi-HIEC meeting has been organised for 13th September to bring together people from around the country who are interested in accreditation and simulation, with the aim of piloting the new template.