August 27, 2021By Lance Baily

Latest Clinical Simulation News From Around the World | August 2021

Helping healthcare simulation educators, administrators and learners to stay up-to-date on industry topics, finds and shares relevant news and information from around the world. This news includes medical simulation observances, products, vendors, funding and more. Together, these industry updates help paint pictures of where the healthcare simulation industry is presently, and where the industry is headed as the scope of clinical simulation practice expands across the field. Below are some of the world’s latest clinical simulation updates.

World Patient Safety Day is September 17, 2021

World Patient Safety Day is an annual observance that calls for global solidarity and concerted action by all countries and international partners to improve patient safety. The Day brings together patients, families, caregivers, communities, health workers, healthcare leaders and policy-makers to show their commitment to patient safety. For World Patient Safety Day 2021, the World Health Organization (WHO) urges all stakeholders to “Act now for safe and respectful childbirth!” with the theme “Safe maternal and newborn care.”

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The Patient Safety Movement Foundation helps support this observance through the organization’s second annual #uniteforsafecare campaign. This campaign is designed to bring global awareness to the public and human rights issues we are all now facing: the lack of safety in healthcare that the pandemic brought to light. The PSMF’s virtual program will touch on this theme and will explore the concepts of high-reliability and create two tracks so that both the general public and stakeholders from healthcare will find value in the programming. RSVP to the free virtual event.

Cyber Patient Free Global Conference on Patient Safety

Cyberpatient will host a free Global Conference on Patient Safety on Friday, September 17, 2021 at 7 AM (PST). A recording will be made available for those who are unable to attend live. Register here.

Speakers will include:

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  • Dr. Alberto Ferreres – University Buenos Aires
  • Dr. Kieran Walsh – Clinical Director, BMJ
  • Dr. Savvas Nicolaou – University of British Columbia

Broward Health Using VirtaMed’s ‘LaparoS’

VirtaMed recently announced that Broward Health Medical Center has become the first United States’ medical institution to receive the VirtaMed LaparoS surgical training simulator. This is a mixed reality laparoscopic simulator that provides resident physicians with a healthcare simulation environment to prepare for clinical practice. According to VirtaMed, Broward Health will use the LaparoS for general surgery training with an emphasis on patient safety.

“Simulation is a great way to enhance medical skills,” said Kimberly Mazili, Business Development Manager for VirtaMed. “Broward Hospital Medical Center has already had years of success with our orthopedics simulator. It was a logical step for Broward to be the first to get our new LaparoS so they could extend the capacity of their simulation center and their residency programs.”

“We chose the LaparoS because it offers our residents a more realistic simulation of what they will encounter in the operating room,” added Dr. Ivan Puente, General Surgery Program Director at Broward Health Medical Center. “We feel very strongly that this will not only enhance their skill development and also contribute to patient safety.”

Health Scholars, AAP Offer New VR Training Application

In partnership with Health Scholars, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has launched Pediatric Emergency Care, a VR training application specifically designed for EMS providers. Pediatric Emergency Care for EMS allows EMS providers to see, assess, and care for various disease states, including respiratory distress, respiratory failure, shock, and cardiopulmonary failure across a diverse set of pediatric patients. The on-demand training prompts providers to complete four different in-home scenarios with a virtual EMS team. Each scenario is scored and provides an in-application debrief.

“We know that recognizing severe illness in infants and children is challenging, and it’s further compounded by limited exposure to pediatric emergencies. Unless EMS providers are frequently practicing, the nuanced skills needed to assess and treat children effectively decline over time, leading to significant readiness challenges. Today’s options fall short, but VR provides organizations a way to scale standardized and immersive pediatric competency training affordably,” said Jonathan Epstein MEMS, NRP, Health Scholars Director of Product and Strategy.

IngMar Medical Launches RespiPro Respiratory Simulator

IngMar Medical announced the launch of the company’s next-generation solution for respiratory and ventilation healthcare simulation training, RespiPro. With RespiPro, educators can train all levels of learners across multiple disciplines on the full scope of respiratory techniques using their own real ventilators and respiratory devices. The solution includes the most realistic breathing simulator, the ASL 5000, as well as easy-to-use software, a true-to-life patient monitor, and a respiratory-focused manikin on a compact ICU bed.

While the concept of RespiPro is the same as our legacy RespiSim System solutions, this launch is particularly monumental due to the overhaul of both the software and hardware components. IngMar Medical worked closely with educators throughout the entire development process to ensure RespiPro meets your respiratory and ventilation training needs.

FundamentalVR Unveils Soft Tissue Capabilities

FundamentalVR unveiled further advancements on the company’s Fundamental Surgery platform. According to the company, these advancements provide a level of realism that produces a credible complement and alternative to traditional medical education methods. Leveraging full force feedback kinesthetic haptics, high-fidelity graphics and 3D spatial technology, the new soft tissue capabilities allow surgeons to manipulate and feel the texture of anatomy as if they were in the operating room.

Immertec, CAMLS Awarded NIH Small Business Grant

Immertec, a medtech startup company, and the USF Health Center for Advanced Medical Learning and Simulation (CAMLS) were awarded a $150,000 Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) through the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS). Both teams plan to utilize this grant to examine the effectiveness of training emergency medicine physician residents using Immertec’s virtual reality (VR) platform.

“The research conducted in collaboration with USF Health CAMLS will provide empirical evidence on how immersive remote technologies compare to traditional telementoring methods in medicine. We look forward to leveraging the extensive knowledge of the USF Health team and CAMLS’ state-of-the-art facility to better understand how to improve our technology to train medical professionals,” said Shannon Bailey, Ph.D., human factors scientist at Immertec and principal investigator on this grant.

INACSL Grant Opportunity: The Debra Spunt Research Grant

The INACSL Debra Spunt Research Grants are designed to fund research that advances the science of simulation in healthcare and is related to at least one of the INACSL research priorities. Rigorously designed research proposals, both qualitative and quantitative are welcome. These grants are designed to encourage novice researchers. Priority will be given to first-time applicants. In the 2022 grant period, competitive reviews will result in the awarding of two (2) $1,000 grants funded by Laerdal Medical. The 2022 application period is open from July 22, 2021 – October 10, 2021.

SimUAB Mobile Simulation Lab Takes Training to the Professionals

According to the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s UAB News, SimUAB mobile simulation lab, a component of UAB Clinical Simulation, is the only mobile simulation unit in Alabama. SimUAB and the Alabama Rural Health Collaborative are currently taking part in a new joint project. As part of this project, they are working to bring advanced simulation training directly to healthcare professionals around the state. Their 38-foot vehicle is being used as a teaching tool available to medical facilities associated with the UAB Health System. Two workspaces, manikins, AV recording systems and more are included.

HaptX Raises $12 Million for Next-Gen Haptic Gloves

According to Virtual Reality World Tech, HaptX has secured $12 million in series A-1 financing following the successful debut of its most advanced haptic feedback gloves. The US-based haptic technology provider is also moving into new headquarters in the Seattle area as the company gears up a second manufacturing run of HaptX Gloves DK2, whose first run sold out in less than six months. HaptX uses proprietary microfluidic technology to replicate the feeling of touching real objects. Each DK2 glove features more than 130 discrete points of tactile feedback that physically displace the user’s skin up to 2 mm.

UCF Installs Hologram Technology for Healthcare Simulation Education

Hologram technology is now being used in the academic setting to provide healthcare simulation education. This fall, the University of Central Florida (UCF) will be providing learners with the opportunity to experience holograms in the classroom for the first time. The holograms are specifically designed to help healthcare learners better understand patient safety and overall care. This lifelike hologram experience is made possible by employing a piece of equipment called PORTL.

PORTL is a device that allows users to “beam themselves to a location thousands of miles away” and interact with the people there through telepresence, or “holoportation.” Founded by David Nussbaum in Los Angeles in 2019, the technology allows the user to upload and schedule live and pre-recorded content which can then be streamed anywhere in the world.

2021 Simulation Articles of Influence

The ICE (International Clinician Educators) blog highlights “articles of influence” from the four main simulation journals — Simulation in Healthcare, Clinical Simulation in Nursing, Advances in Simulation and BMJ Simulation and Technology Enhanced Learning. The list is presented annually at the International Meeting for Simulation in Healthcare (IMSH), which was held virtually in 2021.

How are the articles chosen? Society members express interest in reviewing articles, with coordination and oversight from members of the SSH Research Committee (including GR, ST and MK, co-authors of this post). This year, 198 nominated articles were reviewed by a team of 36 reviewers and rated them for their influence on their own or their colleagues’ simulation practice. Review the list.

U.S. Army Surgeon General Visits Tripler Medical Simulation Center

During a trip to Tripler, Lt. Gen. R. Scott Dingle, commanding general of the U.S. Army Medical Command and 45th Army Surgeon General, and Command Sgt. Maj. Diamond D. Hough, MEDCOM command sergeant major, met with Hawaii’s Army Medicine leaders to discuss strategies for effective patient care within military health facilities. They also met to discuss the importance of strong leadership for the future of Army Medicine. One stop was Tripler Medical Simulation Center. While there, Hough was able to experience battlefield acupuncture, a form of auricular acupuncture that helps to provide immediate pain relief for both acute and chronic pain, while in the IPMC.

Teresa Britt Earns CHSE-A Certification

Teresa Britt, MSN, RN, interim co-director and director of education of the Center for Healthcare Improvement and Patient Simulation (CHIPS) at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, has earned the international Certified Healthcare Simulation Educator-Advanced (CHSE-A) certification. She has been a nurse since 1977, in nursing education since 1982, and specifically in clinical simulation development since 1998. According to the University of Tennessee, Britt joins the ranks of only 88 individuals worldwide who have achieved this distinction.

“Achieving the CHSE-A credential has been a goal of mine for several years,” Britt said. “This credential represents an extensive portfolio, including publications, presentations and a focused comprehensive project implementing simulation best practice standards. I am honored to join this group of international simulation experts.”

PPE Shortages: Creating Reusable Surgical & Isolation Gowns

When PPE supplies became significantly limited around the world due to the COVID19 pandemic, the Zamierowski Institute for Experiential Learning (ZIEL) (a partnership with the University of Kansas Health System and the University of Kansas Medical Center) staff looked for solutions to save the limited supplies for clinical use. In order to ensure the program would be able to meet the demand for training, leadership developed a partnership with Aurora by Alyce in Des Moines, Iowa to design and produce exact replica fabric reusable gowns specifically for training purposes.

Starting with a single sterile OR gown and a single isolation gown, Alyce was able to create a pattern for both types of gowns and send them back for review. According to Stephanie Swanson, Director of Business Operations at ZIEL, while ZIEL Simulation hopes PPE supplies will become better stocked, the program shares gratitude for the ability to repurpose supplies for clinical use where appropriate and continue training using these gowns, while not diverting from clinical supply.

Medcases: Virtual Patient – Real Experience

Medcases is an e-learning platform for medical students as well as interns and residents to develop their diagnostic and therapeutic skills on a virtual patient, no matter where they are located. The virtual cases include over 320 diseases, 20,000 users and an infinite number of unique cases. The solution also allows for conducting an accurate physical examination of every region of the body. Medcases provides a safe, virtual environment for learners and physicians to practice and make mistakes, helping to avoid errors in real practice.

NASA is Recruiting for Yearlong Simulated Mars Mission

According to NASA, the government agency is seeking applicants for participation as a crew member during the first one-year analog mission in a habitat to simulate life on a distant world, set to begin in Fall 2022. The series of missions — known as Crew Health and Performance Exploration Analog — will include three one-year Mars surface simulations based at NASA’s Johnson Space Center. Each mission will consist of four crew members living and working in a 1,700-square-foot module 3D-printed by ICON, called Mars Dune Alpha. The agency explains that the analogs will support research to develop methods and technologies to prevent and resolve potential problems on future human spaceflight missions to the Moon and Mars.

“The analog is critical for testing solutions to meet the complex needs of living on the Martian surface,” said Grace Douglas, lead scientist for NASA’s Advanced Food Technology research effort at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. “Simulations on Earth will help us understand and counter the physical and mental challenges astronauts will face before they go.”

Radiology Improvements Led by Healthcare Simulation

In an article on, author Erik L. Ridley shares information from a presentation given by Traci Foster of Texas Children’s Hospital the Woodlands at the 2021 AHRA meeting in Nashville, Tennessee. Ridley explains that in her talk, Foster describes the process of healthcare simulation and shares how several techniques helped her institution to prepare for a new mobile MRI unit. She expresses several clinical simulation components, guiding principles, the importance of debriefing and of identifying safety threats.

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