September 5, 2023By Teresa Gore

Healthcare Simulation Research Update August 2023

The field of healthcare simulation has made tremendous strides forward over the past several decades. One way this revolution is made possible is through clinical simulation research being conducted across the globe. The journal Clinical Simulation in Nursing is constantly sharing updates that include article reviews, more information on standards of best practice, research briefs, and overall innovations in medical simulation. The journal has an impact factor of 2.6 for 2022 and 2.9 for a 5-Year impact factor. Clinical simulation should be designed, developed, implemented, and evaluated based on the latest research and evidence-based practices that are supported by the Healthcare Simulation Standards of Best Practice. This article provides an overview of the latest clinical simulation highlights as of August 2023 and explains how these updates impact the healthcare simulation community overall.

Understanding Mixed-Methods in Healthcare Simulation Research: Scope and Limitations: Healthcare simulation research has emerged as a valuable tool for educating practitioners of the future, improving patient care, and healthcare system performance. To gather comprehensive insights, researchers often use a mixed-methods approach, which combines both qualitative and quantitative data collection and analysis techniques. While Clinical Simulation in Nursing receives many articles that employ a mixed-methods approach, we continue to see authors who indicate that they are using mixed-methods, however it quickly becomes apparent that this is not necessarily the case. In order to assist authors in determining how to best describe their research, I would like to briefly explore what mixed-methods is and what it is not in the context of healthcare simulation research. This is not a comprehensive review, and I recommend researchers and authors review the many texts that are available to guide their work (Creswell and Clark, 2018; Nestel et al., 2019).

Improving Management of Absconsion in Forensic Mental Health Through Simulation-Based Education: Managing patient absconsion events within the forensic mental health population has been a challenging issue for healthcare providers working within the forensic mental health system. Poor adherence to and understanding of how to manage an absconsion can impact patients, family members, health care providers, as well as community partners and the community at large. Timely responses to these incidents are critical to mitigate any adverse events. Absconsion events in the forensic mental health population are a rare, but significant occurrence. Building staff confidence and competence in managing these incidents can be challenging due to their infrequency. The simulation education was delivered while implementing a redeveloped forensic absconsion procedure. The participants well received the education, and eLearning enhancing virtual reality had created a broader staff education due to Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) restrictions. Simulation-based approach was effective in disseminating the new procedure and improved confidence in absconsion management.

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Virtual Reality Simulation’s Influence on Nursing Students’ Anxiety and Communication Skills With Anxious Patients: A Pilot Study: Anxiety is the most prevalent mental health disorder in the United States and globally. Nurses do not feel adequately prepared to care for anxious patients, citing a lack of education in effective communication skills. Ineffective communication can negatively influence the therapeutic nurse-patient relationship and patient outcomes. Simulation methods such as high-fidelity simulation and standardized patients have decreased nursing students’ anxiety levels in caring for anxious patients. The use of full immersion virtual reality simulation as an education modality has demonstrated success in nonhealthcare and medical education but is limited in nursing education. Thirty-three nursing students from two accredited registered nurse programs. A quasi-experimental design implementing an anxious patient scenario in full immersion virtual reality simulation was utilized. Spielberger’s short-form State Anxiety Inventory assessed students’ anxiety levels, while the simulation’s analytics dashboard evaluated their communication skills. A statistically significant decrease in students’ anxiety levels over time was found. Participants’ communication scores did not demonstrate significance. Full immersion VRS demonstrated a decrease in students’ anxiety levels. This study was the first to utilize the simulation’s analytics dashboard to evaluate communication skills.

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The Effect of Mixed Reality-based HoloPatient in Problem-based Learning Contexts: There has been little investigation of nursing students’ experience of MR-based HoloPatient integrated into PBL contexts. A mixed methods design was used to examine the effect of HoloPatient-based PBL in nursing students. This study found significant positive effects of the HoloPatient-based PBL on problem-solving ability, critical thinking disposition, and learning confidence and satisfaction. Two themes were identified for students’ experiences in the HoloPatient-based PBL: positive experiences of HoloPatient-based PBL learning, and suggestions for improvement. MR-based HoloPatient incorporated with PBL can allow students to learn problem-solving skills in realistic nursing work contexts, acquire related nursing knowledge and increase their learning motivation.

More About Clinical Simulation in Nursing

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Clinical Simulation in Nursing is an international, peer-reviewed journal published online monthly. Clinical Simulation in Nursing is the official journal of the International Nursing Association for Clinical Simulation and Learning (INACSL) and reflects the organization’s mission to advance the science of healthcare simulation.

Articles are indexed in the Science Citation Index Expanded, Journal Citation Reports/Science Edition, Social Science Citation Index, Journal Citation Reports/Social Sciences Edition, and Current Contents/Social and Behavioral Health Sciences. INACSL reviews and accepts articles from other health provider disciplines, if they are determined to be of interest to the INACSL readership. The journal accepts manuscripts meeting one or more of the following criteria:

  • Research articles and literature reviews (e.g. systematic, scoping, umbrella, integrative, etc.) about simulation
  • Innovative teaching/learning strategies using simulation
  • Articles updating guidelines, regulations, and legislative policies that impact simulation
  • Leadership for simulation
  • Simulation operations
  • Clinical and academic uses of simulation

More About INACSL

The International Nursing Association for Clinical and Simulation Learning (INACSL) is an association dedicated to advancing the science of healthcare simulation. With over 1,800 members worldwide, the organization’s mission is to be the global leader in the art and science of healthcare simulation through excellence in nursing education, practice, and research.

INACSL’s goal is also to advance the science of nursing simulation by providing professional development, networking resources, and leadership in defining healthcare simulation standards of best practice. INACSL membership provides the education, resources, and tools that best address current challenges and help support learners, educators, and professional goals related to the learning of healthcare simulation’s latest developments. This is while ensuring that these individuals are enabled to provide the most comprehensive education and training for high-quality patient care.

Whether someone is new to healthcare simulation and is looking to understand the fundamentals or is experienced and seeking the latest updates and research, INACSL can provide them with the support they need. Membership in INACSL is based on connection, engagement, support, and inspiration.

Learn More About the Clinical Simulation in Nursing Journal!

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