What is the purpose of simulation?

Taking a closer look at the 4 main purpose of healthcare simulation and how this impacts education and quality of patient care.

Healthcare simulation allows institutions to educate and train students by acting as the bridge between classroom learning and real-life clinical experience. The purpose is to improve technical, cognitive, and behavioral skills via personalized experiences, such as the ones offered by virtual reality (VR).

Healthcare simulation enables students to acquire and improve clinical skills, but it also offers more safety, efficiency, and reliability. It helps medical and healthcare students to learn without the fear of harming patients or putting them in an uncomfortable situation.

Here are the four main purposes of health simulation-

1. Education

2. Assessment

3. Research

4. Health System Integration

1. Education

A growing body of research evidence shows that medical malpractice cases are increasing due to ineffective healthcare education and training in various institutions worldwide.

Medical negligence cases result from harming or injuring patients due to misdiagnosis or inadequate medical treatment by doctors, physicians, radiographers, midwives, nurses, laboratory professionals, and other allied health practitioners.

However, hospitals and healthcare institutions can reduce the risk of medical malpractice cases by enhancing students’ clinical competencies. Research shows that the most effective way in the 21st century to achieve this objective is by employing healthcare simulation training.

The improved competencies are directly proportional to patients’ safe.

The mercury bursts through the thermometer reading How Are You Doing, giving you a self evaluation or assessment on your progress and performance.

2. Assessment

Healthcare simulation is an effective form of assessment – both formative and summative - allowing teachers and students to share instant feedback. Simulations enable instructors to assess students’ competencies, including their knowledge, professionalism, and problem-solving skills.

Simulations also allow assessment to be objective as all students can be given identical assessments – something that cannot happen in the clinical environment.

It also enables instructors to evaluate students’ ability to respond to difficult hospital situations and identify weaknesses. For instance, virtual reality is an immersive technology, and VR simulation can create an immersive and realistic assessment environment.

However, it is crucial to holistically use a VR-based simulation environment to evaluate clinical skills and relevant competencies. That way, instructors can observe, monitor, and assess students’ personality traits, attitudes, and behaviors in real-time.

In addition, VR simulation allows instructors to evaluate whether students can manage stress, work as a team, and make informed decisions in a clinical setting. So, healthcare simulations allow for authentic assessments that encourage students to use their knowledge and skills in a real-life environment.

Advanced simulation assessments can allow an assessor to gradually introduce complexities into the scenario as the assessment is taking place if they think the student is handling the situation well.

3. Research

Simulation technologies can optimize research processes and streamline students’ abilities to collect and analyze healthcare data effectively. For example, when students simulate a particular healthcare event, they can identify and understand the causes and outcomes.

Moreover, instructors and students can collaborate to test various techniques in a simulated environment. The purpose is to let students make mistakes and learn from them to better prepare for real-world scenarios.

Whether it is research on diagnostic procedures, preoperative and postoperative interventions, medication administration, or any other process, simulation-based technologies can enhance researchers’ skills and allow them to collect and evaluate real-time data.

4. Health System Integration

Simulations are an excellent way to integrate health systems by identifying the system’s properties, determining problems/defects, and implementing effective, safe, and reliable healthcare delivery mechanisms.

Not only do simulations in health systems allow for state-of-the-art assessment methods, such as virtual reality, but they also improve objectivity and fairness in evaluations. The use of big data analytics and immersive VR simulations can improve students’ outcomes, accurate data analysis, and facilitate patients’ safety.

Final Words

Healthcare simulation technologies are an important part of modern medical and healthcare education because they offer various theoretical and practical strategies, leading to improved learning environments.

VR-based simulation customized according to students’ needs can promote experiential and reflective learning.


How does health care simulation affect patient care?

There is a growing body of evidence that suggests health care simulation can positively affect patient care. Specifically, simulation-based training has been shown to improve patient safety and quality of care.

Additionally, simulation can help reduce medical errors and improve communication among health care providers.

How can healthcare simulation be used to teach and assess clinical skills?

Healthcare simulation can be used to teach and assess clinical skills by providing a realistic & safe environment for learners to practice and receive feedback on their performance.

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