Created in 2005 to provide a 21st century adjunct to traditional medical education at Vanderbilt, the Simulation Technologies Program (STP) exists as an integral discipline within the Center for Experiential Learning and Assessment (CELA). Constantly striving for refinement and excellence in outcome, the STP steadily grows its program offerings to a variety of medical specialties and interdisciplinary teams.
About Simulation Technologies
Few technologies inherently possess the potential for widespread improvements in healthcare or the preparation and advanced training of medical professionals. For over a century, the traditional apprenticeship model of medical education prevailed, with its "see one, do one, teach one" methodology of instruction. In modern medicine, difficulties abound to even "see one," let alone do the "many" actually required to gain competence in more advanced skills. With simulation, learners experience rare events in a controlled environment, wherein they may practice even the most complex skills, until perfected and without risk to human patients.
Simulation also presents exciting research opportunities, a true-to-life context in which team dynamics and interaction play roles in patient safety. Simulation represents an ideal way to study human factors, offering repeatability not only for practice, but also for improved statistical precision.
Simulation Technologies provide one of the greatest potentials for improving the quality of medical education, improving patient safety and reducing both the incidence and the cost of medical errors. The research continues to grow, establishing the validity and reliability of simulation-based assessment and the use of simulation as a surrogate for actual patient care in patient safety and quality improvement efforts. Nonetheless, the STP stands vigilant, ready to examine supposition and outcome claims attached to simulation technologies, persuaded that even the best prevailing practice may be improved.