Children's National simulation team

Children’s National Hospital Simulation Program receives SSH accreditation

Children's National simulation team

In this picture are L-R- Kellee Humphries, Clinical Simulation Technician; Rosalyn Manuel, Simulation Education Specialist; Simmy King, Chief Nursing Informatics and Education Officer; Laura Nicholson, Simulation Education Specialist; Heather Walsh, Simulation Program Manager; Kaitlin Moran, Clinical Simulation Technician; Nina Brown, Simulation Education Specialist.

A peer-reviewed organization of healthcare simulation, known as The Society for Simulation in Healthcare (SSH), accredited the Children’s National Hospital Simulation Program in the areas of Teaching/Education and Systems Integration.

“The accreditation is the culmination of years of hard work and recognition of our best practices in simulation education,” said Heather Walsh, M.S.N., R.N., P.C.N.S.-B.C., C.H.S.E., simulation program manager at Children’s National. “It’s been exciting to see simulation integrated into so many facets of care and processes throughout the organization. It makes our work fun and incredibly rewarding.”

The accreditation recognizes the program’s development and standardization of simulation operations, policies and procedures that guided the educational practices.

In teaching and education, the program provided examples of curriculum development, implementation and evaluation. Adaptive response training (the previous hospital-wide simulation-based training), hospitalist simulations and interprofessional nurse-resident simulations served as exemplars.

“Most of our simulations focus on improving teamwork and communication, safety events that have occurred on a particular unit, proper documentation or introducing new equipment or equipment that is not frequently used,” said Nina Brown, M.S., R.N.C.-O.B., simulation education specialist at Children’s National. “The simulation environment allows learners to practice the skills and communication that would be carried out in the real world.”

Gregory Yurasek, M.D., C.H.S.E., critical care simulation director at Children’s National, mentioned that they offered fellows virtual reality (VR) in pediatric cardiac critical care simulations.

“We piloted scenarios with six attending pediatric cardiac critical care physicians this summer to test the feasibility of VR for educational and practice improvement efforts in this highly specialized clinical environment,” said Dr. Yurasek.

The program uses a multidisciplinary approach that increases the possibilities to save a patient’s life in the real clinical environment.

“We can bring doctors and nurses together to practice assessment, management, escalation, teamwork and safety communication in a safe environment where each discipline can practice safety techniques such as shared mental model, closed-loop communication and peer coaching,” said Laura Nicholson M.S.N., R.N., C.P.N., C.H.S.E.

The collaboration also includes working with nearly every department, inpatient and outpatient, radiology, pharmacy, dialysis and others.

“I am really proud to join the team knowing that my colleagues are so committed to the work,” said Rosalyn Manuel, M.S.N., B.S.N., R.N., simulation education specialist at Children’s National. “I feel inspired by their commitment and want my own work to rise to the high bar that has been set.”