Modelling and Simulation are concerned with exactly that: replicating the model and simulating the conditions as close as possible to the current standard. In some cases, creating that perfect simulated experience takes a lot of innovation and creativity. I applaud and respect the many simulationists that work behind the scenes in modelling to increase the realism of training experiences.
With many healthcare simulation centres that are underfunded and understaffed, it takes innovation and creativity to make things happen. It takes a keen eye to redistribute resources as needed. From experience as a former centre administrator, I noticed that we were going through an insane amount of oxygen in our labs that carried significant cost. What could be done to optimize resources? Several things:
First, we needed to understand how much oxygen was costing us to provide a picture of the financial importance. Next, we needed to collect information from instructors, staff and ask vital questions regarding learner safety such as “do we actually place oxygen on a live person in a simulated experience?”, “does the simulator only receive oxygen?”, “does real oxygen actually change the simulator’s vital signs?”, “what safety labelling do we need to place on a nursing headwall?” and so on. I would also recommend performing a risk assessment with key external stakeholders including occupational health and safety departments. When you have collected the information and identified risks, you can make an evidence-based decision with your team.
In my situation, we made the switch to compressed air. The cost to create a compressed air delivery system was minimal compared to cost savings of traditional oxygen. The decision to switch had additional benefits that included the injection of tens of thousands of budget dollars could be reallocated into program support per year. Yes, per year! It also decreased operational demand as we did not need to have staff call suppliers, request refills, set aside delivery time, pay for cylinder maintenance, etc.
Many healthcare simulation centres are not fully supported and rely on the innovation of team members to maximize operations. Take a look around your department, what do you see that could be optimized? Send me an email, I’d love to hear about it.
About the Author: Matthew Jubelius is a subject matter expert in healthcare simulation. He is a consultant, educator and wants to change the future of people development, education, and training. He has championed the design, implementation, and evaluation of simulation-based education and training programs, including quality improvement measures for post-secondary institutions, private industry, and the federal government.
Matthew can be reached through www.amoveotraining.com for simulation consulting, program development, employee training and speaking engagements.
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