5 Mistakes To Avoid When Selecting Medical Simulation A/V Systems, From CAE Healthcare

healthcare simulation av system reviews

CAE Healthcare just shared “5 Mistakes to Avoid when Installing your AV Debriefing System” on their company blog. Mike Bonner, Team Lead of LearningSpace Operations at CAE Healthcare shares these top 5 tips:

1 – Keep IT in the loop - Woe to the educator who selects and purchases an AV system without consulting IT and facilities staff first. You’ll need to call on both after you buy, whether it’s to establish your networking and backup system or rewire your simulation room with more outlets. They’ll know what questions to ask to ensure a smooth installation.

2 – In fact, involve everyone who is going to use the AV system – Sometimes the people making the purchase decision do not have a clinical perspective of simulation learning. Or in a new building, it may be left to the architect to design the system and make assumptions on their behalf.  Make sure all the future users are around the table.

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3– Choose the right camera for the right task – “A camera for suturing is not the right camera for a round table discussion,” says Bonner. “And for team training, you need a camera with a room-centric view.” Consider what you want to record, and choose cameras with higher zoom capabilities for detail work and cameras with wider angles to capture team interaction.

4 – Understand your timeline – Your crackerjack AV team arrives for the big installation day, but your sim room is empty. The furnishings or simulators haven’t arrived, and that’s a problem. Schedule your AV installation after everything is in place so the team can aim each camera properly and show you how to operate your system.

5 – Plan ahead for growth - What types of simulations are you doing now? What will you be doing next year, and what will you be doing in the next five years? Consider multi-purpose rooms. If your AV team understands your plans up front, they might recommend adding additional cameras to allow for more flexibility as your program expands.

Read the full article here, and be sure to check out the CAE Healthcare Blog for more great tips!

4th Annual SimGHOSTS Sim Tech Training Symposium Opens Registration

simghosts accp

SimGHOSTS.org just announced that registration has opened for their 4th annual SimGHOSTS 2014 USA event hosted by the American College of CHEST Physicians in Greater Chicago, IL. Taking place this August 5th-8th, SimGHOSTS has been called the innovative leader in medical simulation technology community and training opportunities. Whether you are just starting your operation of healthcare simulation technology or you have been fixing manikins for years, SimGHOSTS 2014 has almost 50 courses covering beginner, intermediate and advanced lessons in a huge range of topics including:

  • Manikin Hardware Repair & Maintenance for Laerdal, Gaumard and CAE Healthcare products
  • Audio recording, mixing and publishing
  • Video cinematography and in-situ camera placement
  • Advanced Video editing for sim lab promotional and orientation videos
  • Building your own task trainers
  • Medical pharmacology, jargon and educator needs for sim techs without healthcare backgrounds
  • Manikin programming and control room reconfiguration with virtual firmware
  • Budget A/V systems including GoPros
  • Professional development workshops to help lead the simulation technology community
  • Inventory control systems & technology procurement techniques
  • Identifying Sim Tech challenges
  • Sim Lab DIY project innovations from around the world
  • SimGHOST TroubleShooting Competition
  • IT Networking workshops
  • Download the SG14 USA brochure for this and much much more!

The live-streamed Keynote Address will be provided by newly appointed SimGHOSTS Interim President James Cypert who will be speaking on basic research methods that Sim Techs can apply, then begin a conversation about community focus and topics for future research. The goal is to provide some of the basic tools, resources, and methods for providing evidence‑based practice for simulation technologists, ascertaining cogent research topics, and identifying collaborative opportunities, and establishing working relationships to achieve higher levels of dialog from the community.

The Laerdal Plenary address will be presented by Jane Nicklin and members of the Hull and East Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust Guests from the United Kingdom will discuss an initiative that is the first in the UK and provides an opportunity to start an exciting career in one of Yorkshire and the Humber’s simulated healthcare learning environments. The goal of this apprenticeship will be to achieve nationally accepted qualifications that will be recognized by employers and support career progression in science and technical roles.

B-Line Medical will be hosting their famous Video Contest, with this year’s theme being best “How-To” video. Over $1000 in prizes will be given to SimGHOSTS attendees whose video helps other Sim Techs learn “how-to” increase efficiency or realism in their medical simulation labs.

Finally of great note here is the Pocket Nurse Scholarships due April 30th, which will provide (2) $1500 scholarships to Sim Techs in need to help cover the cost of attending the 2014 event!

Apparently last year 1/3rd of the available Early-Bird passes sold out on the first day, so SimGHOSTS recommends those that want to sign up for the limited advanced courses or secure the discounted rate be sure to register early!

Learn more at SimGHOSTS.org’s 2014 USA Event Page!

Short Video: Resident Education in Ultrasound Using Simulation and Social Media

ultrasound simulator training for residents

Earlier this month Dr. Jason Nomura posted a fast-paced 15-minute review of resident education in ultrasound training using simulation and social media on youtube. I have previously written about how social media has been effective in a nursing school, so I was eager to learn how it could play a part in resident training. This is a great short presentation on these two topics:

About the video: “There was a session at the American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine 2014 Annual Meeting focusing on education in Point of Care Ultrasound. There were several speakers and I was asked to speak on resident education, particularly to focus on simulation and social media and how it fits with EM Resident ultrasound education. This is a fairly large and broad area to cover in 15 minutes or less.

I chose to focus on how to simulation and social media can assist in education and deliberate practice to get learners to an “expert performance” level. The information may not be new to people who are familiar with simulation or social media. My goal was to show how these things can be helpful from a conceptual and design view for education. Also to provide information that you can use if you have to justify to others why social media or simulation is important to your educational program and why it should be supported.”

I learned more about Jason from his website http://takeokun.com:

Jason T Nomura MD RDMS FACEP FACP FAAEM is a Board Certified Physician in Emergency Medicine and Internal Medicine.  He currently practices at a large tertiary care facility with over 160,000 annual Emergency Department visits per year.

Dr. Nomura serves as the Director of the Emergency Medicine Ultrasound Fellowship and the Associate Director of Emergency Ultrasound.  He also serves as educational and research Faculty for the Emergency Medicine, Emergency Medicine – Internal Medicine, Emergency Medicine – Family Medicine, and Internal Medicine Residencies.

CliniSpace Offers Healthcare Training Applications & Engine Platform


Continuing my exploration into medical simulation technology platforms beyond high-fidelity manikin environments, today we take a look at Clinispace which provides both stand alone healthcare education training applications and a fully immersive game engine to build your own training programs. As a hosted application, accessed over the Internet, CliniSpace is a cost-effective and scalable addition to all simulator training. Check out this introductory video to Clinispace below:

The CliniSpace application offers the next generation of training environments for healthcare professionals – immersive, authentic, 3D virtual environments that replicate the familiar surroundings of daily work.Logging into these environments, learners encounter realistic scenarios and problems. They practice alone and in teams, learning to make decisions, to communicate effectively, and to recover safely from errors.As a hosted application, accessed over the Internet, CliniSpace is a cost-effective and scalable addition to all simulator training.

CliniSpace is a also platform for development of a wide range of immersive medical applications. Its modular design supports rapid design of spaces, reconfiguration of equipment and furniture, and reuse of its many characters (avatars). The virtual patients in CliniSpace are represented by detailed physiologic and 3D graphic models. The models exchange data with the instruments and devices using a modular approach that also supports addition of devices and tests as appropriate. Work with Clinispace to build custom applications for various organizations.

operating room healthcare training application

Recently Clinispace launched BattleCare, which was built with the goal of training in the basics of battlefield trauma triage. The target audience is the 18-24 year old medic who is familiar with interactive technology and expects to receive both fun and learning through the same device.

In BattleCare, the learner plays the role of Airman Collins, who is the medic on duty in Gardez near the Afghanistan border. In the episode shown, Airman Collins learns the basics of A-B-C in triage, that is, checking for Airway, Breathing and Circulation in a trauma patient. His mentor, Sergeant Rodriguez, allows Collins to make his own choices (Discovery Learning) but provides feedback on the choices (Guided Discovery). The episode begins with the arrival of the trauma case and ends with successful stabilization and helicopter evacuation of the patient. The rendering style, character positioning, and page layout is based on graphic novel conventions. Gesture-based interaction makes the learner feel like they are touching the patient. Exploration gives a sense of game play while the mentor’s guidance means the learner does not get lost.

Without a doubt you can see how powerful Clinispace is to teach and build learning programs for healthcare providers above say generic development systems such as SecondLife. While SecondLife may be a more affordable option, the time saved in learning how to develop and build your specific learning environments will probably end up costing more than utilizing an application like Clinispace. However, this is an estimation on my part — so I would love to hear from experienced users of either of these systems!

Learn more about Battlecare here, and be sure to visit Clinispace.com for more details!

Road Blocks to Technology Transformation in Healthcare

adoption of medical simulation

As a simulation champion reading this website, I consider you an early-adopter. Countless presentations at medical simulation conferences over the past ten years have reminded us that we are “pioneers”, “innovators” and “early-adopters” who must face a brunt of scorn and dismissal from the early-majority and late majority groups. While medical simulation is a large component of the revolution of medical education technology, the methodology is but a small component of transformative technologies within healthcare in general. I therefore believe as medical simulation champions we must contextualize and compare ourselves to other sectors of healthcare that are being transformed by new technologies in an attempt to reduce friction and increase adoption.

Cyracom provides us with some statistics from Health IT since 2012:

  • The collection of data at the bedside has increased from 30% to 45%.
  • Remote monitoring of data from medical devices has increase from 27% to 34%.
  • Allowing patients to access their own electronic medical records on a mobile device has increased from 32% to 36%.
  • 52% of us now gather health information on our smart phones.
  • 70% of the “most wired” hospitals in the U.S. now provide Telehealth.
  • Smartphones are #9 on the Health Tech Hazards list due to texting during surgery.

The Most Common Types of mHealth APPs Are:

  • Exercise, fitness, pedometer or heart rate monitor
  • Diet, food, calorie counters
  • Weight
  • Blood pressure
  • WebMD
  • Blood sugar
  • Medication management

Top Areas for Future Growth in the TeleHealth Market Include:

  • Home-based care and disease management
  • Remote physician or specialist services
  • Personal emergency response systems
  • Video diagnostic consultations
  • Remote cardiac services

Some of the Predictions for the Future with Health Care Technology Are:

  • 3 million people area expected to be using smartphone powered remote patient monitoring devices by 2016.
  • 44 million mobile health apps will be downloaded this year – 142 million will be downloaded in 2016.
  • The TeleHealth market will grow from the $7 million dollars spent in 2012 to $16 billion in 2016.

While progress continues, how are we on the big picture scale? From the recent 17th annual PwC (PriceWaterHouseCoopers) survey of Global Healthcare CEOs the most interesting take away of “Key Findings in the Healthcare Industry” was that 86% of healthcare CEOs believe technological advances will transform their businesses in the next five years. And they’re far more conscious than other CEOs of the huge role demographics will play – 84% see it as a transformative trend, compared to just 60% across the sample.” The research results continue explaining that “Technology is already having a far-reaching impact on healthcare delivery and CEOs are already planning ways to take advantage of this trend: 89% plan to improve their ability to innovate; 93% plan to change their technology investments; and 95% are exploring better ways of using and managing big data. But there’s a big gap between where healthcare CEOs are now, and where they want to be. Only 25% have already started or completed changes to make their companies more innovative; merely 33% have altered their technology investments, and just 36% have made any headway in getting to grips with big data.” Read the full PwC Global Healthcare CEO Survey here.

Here we can see that the future is known to Healthcare providers, but one telling fact behind the low adoption is that “57% of these Healthcare CEOs worry about the speed of technological change”. Seeing as technology refresh cycles make my six-year old laptop obsolete I think this is a fair reason to be concerned. Heavy capital investments into hardware are out-of-date the day they are installed, which I believe will cause healthcare organizations to reassess budget structures to include more technical staff for preventative maintenance fixes as well as increased line items for annual refresh cycles of departmentalized aging infrastructure. (Note: if you don’t know about how technology refresh cycles work for swapping out technology sectionally, visit HealthySimAdmin.com as the topic was discussed in those videos a great deal!).

The other component of friction to technology adoption is more human. From a US News report “How Technology is Transforming Healthcare” writer Eric Topol explains:

“The gridlock of the medical community, government and the life science industry will not facilitate change or a willingness to embrace and adopt innovation. The U.S. government has been preoccupied with health care “reform,” but this refers to improving access and insurance coverage and has little or nothing to do with innovation. Medicine is currently set up to be maximally imprecise. Private practice physicians render “by the yard” and are rewarded for doing more procedures. Medical care is largely shaped by guidelines, indexed to a population rather than an individual. And the evidence from clinical research is derived from populations that do not translate to the real world of persons. The life science industry has no motivation to design drugs or devices that are only effective, however strikingly, for a small, well-defined population segment. At the same time, the regulatory agencies are entirely risk-averse and, as a result, are suppressing remarkably innovative, and even frugal, opportunities to change medicine. The end result is that most of our screening tests and treatments are overused and applied to the wrong individuals, promoting vast waste. And virtually nothing is being done to accelerate true prevention of disease.”

He then concludes with by calling for “A revolution in technology that is based on the primacy of individuals mandates a revolution by consumers in order for new medicine to take hold. We desperately need medicine to be Schumpetered, to be radically transformed. We need the digital world to invade the medical cocoon and to exploit the newfound and exciting technological capabilities of digitizing human beings.”

I believe the medical cocoon will be broken open by continued improvements within technology, which is why I urge those within the medical simulation champion community to explore how technology is disruptive to healthcare in general. This is an effort to better connect with a larger discussion on the topic, which hopefully will make our lives easier and more fulfilling! Best place to start? Singularity’s University for Exponential Medicine would be my recommendation… more on that soon!


Paint and Powder Cosmetics Provides Quick Application TraumaSkin FX Sculpt Model Gel

medical simulation moulage gel

Looking for quick ways to apply trauma moulage in the field or simulation lab without clunky unrealistic rubber wounds?  Suzanne Patterson from MilitaryMoualge.com fame recently sent me some of her TraumaSkin FX™ Silicone Sculpt and Model Gel. Within 5 minutes I had a realistic wound even with my minimal moulage training experience! Suzanne told me she created these gels so that mass casualty or military training exercise medical training educators could quickly create realistic moulage presence “without expensive, bulky or unrealistic prosthetics”.  With heavy use by the DoD’s MSTC simulation training programs through the U.S. Army, the TraumaSkin FX product has been very much appreciated.  Suzanne also has extensive experience in the movie business, and focuses her more civilian businesses through paintandpowderstore.com.

fast trauma moulage

More about the TraumaFX Product:

This Silicone Sculpt and Model Gel is a simple two part (A and B) platinum silicone paste system that is mixed together in equal amounts by weight or volume to create a thick textured gel. No more messy liquids and dripping containers as this paste-like silicone has the texture of a firm yet soft scar wax that is easily pliable. Once mixed it’s ready to use to sculpt or model into all kinds of 3-D wound effects, scars, or any kind of disfigurements for ultra realistic looking results!

This product is so easy to use that even a beginner artist can create fantastic real-to-the-eye results for all kinds of casualty simulation effects. You don’t need any special tools or equipment to mix and apply this product, and you mix up only what you need so there is no wasting of material. Simply blend equal amounts of Part A and Part B together thoroughly (for about 45 seconds) on a non-porous palette-like surface, and then it’s ready to freehand sculpt on the palette or mold directly on skin into durable wear appliances that bend and flex, and look just like real skin!

trauma moulage gel

PaintandPowderstore.com was created in 2006 by Emmy Award Winning Makeup Artist, Suzanne Patterson, to directly serve the demand for high performing makeup and skin care products for makeup artists and actors working in the film and High Definition Television industry. Having worked heavily in HDTV for the past 8 years she is considered one of the country’s top High Definition Makeup experts, and the professional products offered through the store have been directly tested and performance approved to be HD compatible. The novice artist will find helpful product descriptions and details that are designed to be informative in furthering their product knowledge, decision buying, and application.

(The first person to comment on this post in the HealthySim LinkedIn group will receive by mail the remaining Trauma FX Moulage product sample I received!)

Learn more about the Silicone Trauma Gel at PaintandPowderstore.com and more about Suzanne at CreativeArtistryFX.com!

Tweet Competition For Free Subscriptions to HealthySimAdmin

healthcare simulation twitter

Scan the @HealthySim twitter feed for to retweet and win a free pass to watch all 15 hours of HD-recorded HealthySimAdmin presentations! Learn the “How-To” of simulation program administration with eight awesome videos!

SimGHOSTS 2014 USA Registration Opens Next Week

sim tech training

“Secure Early-Bird Pricing While Supplies Last!”

SimGHOSTS, aka The Gathering of Healthcare Simulation Technology Specialists announced that next week they will be launching registration of their 4th annual hands-on training and community event. This year the world’s first and only organization dedicated specifically to those operating medical simulation technology is being hosted by the American College of Chest Physicians August 5th-8th, in their brand new simulation building in Greater Chicago Illinois. Event Director Ryan Eling told us “This year we are revolutionizing the event with new course structures, powerful new community sessions, and global community leadership opportunities like never before!”. SimGHOSTS has successfully supported thousands of Sim Techs from around the world and in 2014 is providing two community events in both Australia and the United States.

SimGHOSTS’ new Interim President James Cypert is rumored to provide the opening keynote address which will give the Healthcare Simulation Technology Community a strong perspective on what the technical group must begin to do in-order to gain more support and professional development inside and outside the clinical community.

What are the SimGHOSTS Learning Opportunities?

  • Meet with other Simulation Technicians and share best practices
  • Network and build long term industry relationships with peers and vendors
  • Receive specialized training in:
    • High-fidelity manikin hardware & software operation, maintenance and repair
    • Audiovisual production techniques and debugging
    • Learning Management System troubleshooting
    • IT networking
    • Team leadership and communication techniques
    • Manikin moulage and makeup
    • Basic medical terminology, physiology, pharmacology and the latest in healthcare education practices.
  • Discuss and develop professional community needs and standards.

Be sure to check SimGHOSTS.org all next week for the registration to launch as you don’t want to miss early-bird rates. Unlike other events, SimGHOSTS only provides a limited-supply of discounted passes to their three day training workshop symposium – and once those sell out registration will stay at full price!

Learn more about the SimGHOSTS 2014 USA event page here, or visit the SimGHOSTS 2014 Australia event page here if you are in the Asia-Pacific region!

Medical Simulation Program Administrators: “Dealing with Healthcare Simulation IT Issues” Session Free for One Week Only!

administration resource medical simulation

If you manage or coordinate a healthcare simulation lab program then this is no April fool’s joke!

We continue to celebrate yesterday’s 500th article on HealthySimulation.com by sharing here the 2-Hour HD recorded session from HealthySimAdmin on IT Issues & Structures for Healthcare Simulation Program Administrators, led by James Cypert, Technology Director for California Baptist University and currently Interim President for SimGHOSTS aka The Gathering of Healthcare Simulation Technology Specialists. Valued at $150, for the next week you can now stream this video presentation from HealthySimulation.com — but hurry it will go offline next week! Schedule some time to watch this powerful presentation by James followed by a panel discussion of eight simulation program administrators on the topic of IT. Click the link below to watch the 2 hour session!

HealthySimAdmin Was Sponsored By:

UNLV School of Nursing

b-line medical logo

pocket nurse


HealthySimAdmin was the world’s first broadcasted event providing an open and online discussion to share administrative solutions for the “how to” of medical simulation. During the live taping, more than 105 simulation program administrators from around the world participated in-person or online with the HealthySimAdmin panel of sim lab management experts from hospital, military, community college and university nursing programs, medical schools, EMS providers as well as medical simulation consultant groups to cover eight community-selected topics which included: Collaborative simulation program development, Funding sources & models, Faculty/educator buy-in, Research coordination, Daily operations, IT issues & support, Increasing utilization & Business development!

“IT Structures & Issues”: While the methodology of medical simulation has expanded exponentially in clinical education programs around the world, the understanding of the technical requirements necessary to operate these labs has remained somewhat linear. James Cypert leads our discussion of IT issues and support structures. He will provide valuable insights that will help your program avoid short and long-term technical failures. This conversation will include considerations for manikin, audiovisual, network, and computer desktop/laptop hardware needs. Our expert panel will then join James to discuss topics related to operating this new technology including: pitfalls to avoid when designing a new simulation space, lab security and how to control access to sensitive information, the most commonly preventable IT issues, IT support models, maximizing and protecting IT staff time, documentation development and distribution, and currently available training resources. This session will also introduce us to the benefits and recommendations when hiring simulation and IT staff as well as gaining their input on simulation-based equipment purchases. We will also discuss the critical need to consider and develop a plan for technology refresh cycles. Audience question and answer period to follow lecture and panel discussion. This session will help us learn how to successfully navigate the technology support needs of managing medical simulation.

Session Presentation Lead By:

James Dylan Cypert, BAP, BAIT, MCSE, MCT, MCP, MOUS, A+
Technology Director
California Baptist University School of Nursing

Balancing technological skills with interpersonal skills have always been the key to James Cypert’s success in technology. Earning degrees in Information Technology and another in Psychology stretched forth from his fundamental view that nearly all technology problems are really people issues. After spending 8 years in manufacturing, in 1997 James earned his first computer technology certification, and followed it with 14 more. James found great success for 12 in technical education by having a voracious appetite for learning and a unique ability explain complicated technological concepts in ways that were easily understood. In 2010, James accepted his current position as Technical Director for the School of Nursing at California Baptist University. He stepped into a simulation museum, with lots of bells and whistles and not used very often, structural design issues, the complexity of the systems, and lack of buy-in from IT made it difficult for the nursing content experts to get the desire outcomes from the technology. Working closely nursing content experts to develop scenarios, implementing faculty/staff development, and establishing buy-in with the universities IT department, the school of nursing has successfully transformed the simulation center from 2 simulations covering OB and Pediatrics for a total of 16 hours of simulation time, to a simulation center that now has 22 different simulations covering OB, Pediatrics, Adult Health, Mental Health, Critical Care, Community Health, Fundamentals, Physical Assessment, and Geriatrics for a total of 200+ hours of simulation time per semester. Recently James was appointed Interim President of the SimGHOSTS sim tech community support 501(c)3 non profit organization.

HealthySimAdmin IT Structures & Issues Session Now Offline!

If this session helps you, be sure to subscribe to HealthySimulation.com’s free monthly newsletter and to get discounted access to the rest of HealthySimAdmin‘s streamable content!

500th Posted Article For HealthySimulation.com!

500 medical simulation articles

Thanks to your continued support HealthySimulation.com is posting its 500th article today! Since April of 2010 this website has provided more than 500 free articles to the growing community of healthcare simulation champions from around the world. All this week we will be celebrating with some major free giveaways – so stay tuned to the HealthySimulation.com website, the @HealthySim twitter feed, and the HealthySim LinkedIn Group! Back in 2010 we were only getting around 30 visitors a month reading the website — but that number has continued to grow and now more than 8,200 visitors read the website this month alone! Below is a photo of countries which have read the website over the past four years. We’d like to thank you for your continued support of the website and we hope you will continue to share it with fellow simulation champions, by offering some free giveaways this week!

healthcare simulation international

Here are a few of my favorite articles out of the 500:

  1. Welcome Home Simulation Champions – HealthySim’s First Post ever!
  2. Top Ten Most Read Articles From HealthySimulation.com - This is the master list for getting started at HealthySim!
  3. Simulab’s TraumaMan In-Situ at LSU OR - This video is very visual and shows just how powerful Simulab training products can be
  4. The #1 Hiring Mistake in Healthcare Simulation Programs - This recent article got huge response from our community.
  5. Aviation Simulation Industry Comparison Interviews - We must continue to learn from the Aviation Industry.
  6. Driving Simulators – The Real Deal, Driving simulators will soon be everywhere.
  7. What to REALLY look for when Hiring a Sim Tech - Second post ever written!)
  8. NASA’s Flight Simulator Took Up a Whole Building! - I wish I had seen this in real life.
  9. Top Reasons To Attend SimGHOSTS Event. Wow — How far SimGHOSTS has come!

Prizes and Freebies to be distributed this week:

  1. Free streaming access to the “IT Issues & Structures” 2-Hour HD recorded session from HealthySimAdmin – a 2-day recorded event covering the “how-to” of healthcare simulation program administration.
  2. 10 FREE subscriptions all eight HealthySimAdmin sessions (15 hours of administrative content!)
  3. 1 hour of medical simulation consulting by phone regarding any issue your program is facing!
  4. Free Medical Simulation Books! We’ll be sending out some books to help you build your simulation library!

Keep watching the HealthySimulation.com website, the @HealthySim twitter feed, and the HealthySim LinkedIn Group for a chance for these giveaways and more!