One of the greatest ways to enhance medical competency is through simulation. Medical simulation is beneficial in numerous potential strategies for comprehensive and life-like training for safer patient care. It enables the acquisition of clinical skills through deliberate practice rather than an apprentice-style of learning. A trainee can afford to make errors and learn from them without the fear of harming the patient. Simulation, in general, is a technique rather than just a technology that promotes experiential and reflective learning. In addition, it is crucial in teaching crisis resource management skills. However, every good thing has an opposite side, and so does medical simulation.
Simulation modeling solves real-world problems safely and efficiently. However, as much as the technology and the technique in the simulation are beneficial for humankind, it is equally defamed or looked down upon due to the glorious false assumptions attached to them.
In this article, we shall be debunking 3 of the greatest myth of medical simulation:
Myth #1 – The Stream is Only for Running Drills or Task Training
Simulation can indeed provide excellent opportunities to practice technical skills, like interventional therapies of Mentice or managing pregnancy complications during childbirth with CAE Lucina.
Nevertheless, teams can also practice the kinds of skills that we know matter to patient safety, like communication and teamwork. For example, leader Healthcare has shown people how to use simulation to practice using its wide range of top-notch simulation technologies. At this year’s Healthcare Simulation Week 2021, we celebrated the simulation professionals worldwide sharing our high-end simulation technologies in different colleges, hospitals, and universities through various sessions. In addition, we demonstrated simulation strategies that could lead their organization along a journey to becoming a high-reliability organization.
Myth #2 – Simulation Often Requires Expensive Equipment
Ever since the world was first introduced simulation in the late ’60s, we were of the thought that it is always needed the latest and greatest equipment. But, over the years, we have learned that you don’t need much to run a compelling and educational simulation as there are creative and inexpensive ways to use the simulation for learning. For example, many organizations will set up what they call a “Room of Errors” during Patient Safety Awareness Week, sometimes with a mannequin. The ultimate goal is to identify the patient safety error or potential error when you walk into the room. Some may be easy to locate, but some are complex to find. At times there might be a syringe under the bed, or a dirty glove left behind. The patient chart in the room might list an allergy but also order for that same medication. The possibilities are endless. But more often than not, simulation is all about its efficiency and not an expense.
Myth #3 – Only Certain Professionals Can Benefit from Using Simulation Techniques
Beyond the individual level, any organization could learn from using simulation to practice responding to workplace violence or disaster preparedness. A few years ago, we saw many teams using simulation during the Ebola outbreak. That was great, but wouldn’t it be even better if everybody had the chance to practice their protocols prior to an outbreak, flood, forest fire, hurricane, or other natural disaster? Even a larger than the usual number of flu cases can be overwhelming if you’re not prepared.
Last but not the simulation provides an important method of analysis that is easily verified, communicated, and understood. Across industries and disciplines, simulation modeling simplifies valuable solutions by giving clear insights into complex systems. There is no question, but that simulation practice will become more evidence-based in the future and that new evidence will influence best practices in simulation. Healthcare has been in a state of flux for some time and there is a feeling that it has entered an era of continuous change. The simulation will likely follow suit debunking all the above and many such myths. We will have to move quickly to keep up.