August 22, 2022By Lance Baily

The Healthcare Simulation Technology Specialist and Research

Comprehensive Healthcare Simulation: Operations, Technology, and Innovative Practice” is the leading medical simulation book for healthcare professionals starting or expanding their use of the emerging methodology to improve learning, training, and patient safety outcomes. From the basic theories to advanced practices, this healthcare simulation book has been praised as a “must read” by leading medical simulation experts around the world. This article takes a closer look at chapter 16 which focuses on “The Healthcare Simulation Technology Specialist and Research.” Written by Stormy M. Monks, Ph.D., MPH, an Assistant Professor with Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center (TTUHSC) El Paso, and serves as a Research Scientist for the Department of Emergency Medicine, Division of Simulation Education, this chapter acknowledges how healthcare simulation is used to conduct research and improve the methods that are used to teach and evaluate learners.

Ultimately, this process aims to improve the delivery of healthcare simulation within more complex systems. Whether in a supporting role, or as a primary researcher, individuals involved in simulation-based education must first understand and develop the necessary knowledge, skills, and expertise in the area of research to advance the field.

Further, the healthcare simulation technology specialist must develop a level of research proficiency, enabling them to review the quality of other research to enhance understanding and lead to better practice. This “Comprehensive Healthcare Simulation” chapter explains how, like all careers, Healthcare Simulation Technology Specialists (HSTSs) are seeking a pathway to promotion and advancement.

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“Much of what the HSTS does serves as a support to the other faculty and staff of the simulation center. However, the HSTS can and should be encouraged to engage in and take the lead in research activities. Demonstrating ability and prowess in this domain will be well received and can help the individual toward advancement, especially in an academic setting,” the book states.

When beginning to work on such published research, a clinical simulation technology specialist must first understand what is involved when writing an abstract. The healthcare simulation book shares that an abstract is a summary of all the major areas of a research study, and is typically between 120 and 250 words. While this word count may seem low, simulationists must ensure that they make the most of a limited word count, “spark the reader’s interest as soon as possible, keep the writing clear and concise, and explain the importance and significance of the research.”

Moving on from the abstract, a poster presentation will need to be created. The poster is not a regurgitation of the submitted abstract, but instead should expand upon each topic area and be made visually appealing “by incorporating tables, graphs, and/or figures.” This poster presentation should also The poster should also have any additional findings that have been discovered since the original submission. According to Monks, references are also a required portion of a poster.

Organizations that are accepting abstracts for poster presentation are typically also accepting abstracts for podium presentation,” Monks notes in the chapter. “In addition to the information above regarding writing an abstract, there is additional information that will be required. This information includes but is not limited to the target audience (novice, intermittent, or expert level), learning objectives, presentation outline, mechanism(s) to engage the learner (lecture, hands-on activities, etc.), presentation timeline, and immediate and/or long-term evaluation of the presentation.”

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Other elements of the research publication process include publishing a peer-reviewed manuscript, allowing the researcher to gain academic credit for their work. Next, a literature search involves the process of looking for literature that is pertinent to the research topic. This is because the research process begins with a research idea and moves to a literature search and review. Additionally, a matrix method is a simple and efficient tool that is used to synthesize the literature used for a project and is used by researchers to keep track of pertinent research sources for a specific topic or question.

“It is imperative that all literature used as a reference is cited. There are several different citation styles and formats. Be sure to use the style that is specified in the submission instructions. Do not wait to do this once the document is written as it will be difficult to go back and link text with references,” the book explained. “Citing should be a part of the writing process just like adding punctuation.”

Lastly, once the researcher has submitted the abstract or manuscript, there is a review process completed by others in the field. The time necessary for the research to be fully reviewed depends on several factors, including the type of submission. Researchers are ultimately notified of an acceptance, rejection, or, in the case of a manuscript, a request for revision. According to Monks, submission is typically reviewers are given a rubric in which the submission is scored.

For more information on how a healthcare simulation technologist should go about publishing research, “Comprehensive Healthcare Simulation: Operations, Technology, and Innovative Practice” can be purchased online. Ultimately, sim techs should remember that “the simple things like following directions and basic editing and punctuation that can make the difference from a submission that is accepted to one that is rejected.”

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More key takeaways from the Latest Simulation Operations book include:

  • A practical guide helps prepare professionals for the broad scope of simulation in healthcare
  • Defines the domains of medical simulation operations
  • Focuses on the development of the healthcare simulation technology specialist
  • Written and edited by leaders in the field of clinical simulation

Written and edited by leaders in the field, Comprehensive Healthcare Simulation: Operations, Technology, and Innovative Practice is optimized for a variety of learners, including healthcare educators, simulation directors, as well as those looking to pursue a career in simulation operations as healthcare simulation technology specialists. Grab your copy today through the following affiliate commissioned links.

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