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Simulation training: preparing care teams for success

When lives depend on what you do, there's no such thing as a typical day in health care.

Despite the routine nature of some tasks, care providers largely arrive to work not knowing what’s going to happen. Yet, they must be prepared for the unusual and the unexpected, ensuring every patient receives the care they need the moment they need it.

What’s more, health care is a complex work environment that often requires specialized professionals to come together in high-stakes situations to deliver highly choreographed care. Effective teamwork is critical for patient safety and overall quality of care, especially when speed is a factor in a patient’s ultimate outcome. It can mean the difference between recovery and disability, between life and death.  

Unfortunately, health care professionals — doctors, nurses and technicians — are frequently educated and trained in silos. To help bring teams together, MultiCare offers advanced medical simulation. This model of clinical training provides realistic experiences for individuals and teams to learn and practice in a safe, controlled setting — one that eliminates the risk to human life. Care providers also benefit from the support and psychological safety that results from the clear investment in their success.

Most recently, simulation training played a vital role during the COVID-19 pandemic. As 459 nurses bravely volunteered to serve in unfamiliar roles, simulation facilitated opportunities for mastering new techniques and learning to work with new teams quickly and effectively.

Rock the Foundation 2021 will provide funding to advance the simulation program at MultiCare, so care teams are ready to face any challenge — including a global pandemic — together.

Always ready for the next patient

Though most associated with using manikins that mimic human cardiovascular, respiratory and neurologic systems, simulation training can take the form of virtual and computer-based scenarios, teaching fine or gross motor skills or role-playing.

Benefits of this evidence-based strategy include:

  • A safe learning space: simulation means that care providers can practice an exact scenario, repeating and refining the process until they feel comfortable. Individuals and teams can make mistakes, gaining valuable insight into the consequences of their actions. Through deliberate practice, they get experience, which results in greater competence and confidence in caring for patients.

  • Improved teamwork: using experiential learning, simulation focuses on developing effective communication, collaboration and crisis management skills — all critical to patient safety. This team-based training approach is crucial, as nurses, doctors and technicians regularly come together in the real world to care for patients.

  • A high-reliability work culture: simulation reinforces shared values of safety, reliability, quality, excellence and compassion. It also creates the ability to proactively respond to quality indicators.

Your generosity during Rock the Foundation 2021 will provide innovative support to MultiCare’s care teams, leading to safer, better care for every patient, in every setting, every time.