“Building an EMS Simulation Program”, A Video Interview with Victor Valley College – Sponsored by CAE Healthcare

victor valley college ems program

Recently on a trip between Las Vegas and Los Angeles I stopped by Apple Valley California at the Victor Valley College Paramedic Academy Regional Public Safety Training Center. CAE Healthcare Regional Sales Manager Richard Kuschinsky RCP had made the introduction for me to the people behind their simulation program: Brian Hendrickson MS, EMT-P – Assistant Professor, Clinical Coordinator and David C. Oleson, MS, EMT-P – Director, EMS Programs, Department Chair of Public Safety.

Richard told me for months “Lance, you have to stop by and see what this simulation team is doing — it’s amazing”, and after spending a day with the VVC team I totally agree. CAE Healthcare helped to sponsor the production costs of a video interview of the space, the program, and the people who are making simulation work for EMS training at the RPST Center in a way we can all learn from.

Brian Hendrickson: “The building here at the Public Safety Center is actually located in Apple Valley, CA and we are part of the Victor Valley College which is in Victorville, CA.  One of the reasons we moved out here to the kind of Northern end of Apple Valley is that it’s in kind of an industrial area, there is a lot of open area.  We’re able to conduct training, do burns, and that type of stuff without really disturbing any of the neighbors because really, our neighbors are the industrial trucking.”

David Oleson: “It’s a 9 acre facility that houses both law enforcement, fire, and EMS.  Voters approved this in 2008 and it was finished and we actually moved in and held our first courses here in the early Spring of 2012.”

Hendrickson – “Currently we’re able to run usually 4-5 manikins a day when we’re doing simulation – giving every student an opportunity to take at least one, but preferably two team leads a day in the simulation arena.  And, as far as the building – when we build this facility one of the things we did not want is to have the typical simulation space with a hospital bed and fixed cameras and everything like that because as EMS providers, our environment is much different than the hospital, the needs of the patient are much different.  So, we took it on with the premise that the whole 9 acres of our facility would be open to do simulation at.  So if we wanted to do it in a classroom setting – we could do it in a classroom setting.  If we wanted to use the workspace out in the prop yard, we can. We have certain city where we have an apartment building set up, we have a jail cell set up, we have businesses set up – we can do simulation anywhere on the 9 acres and make it as true to life as possible for our students so that when they get into the real world of EMS they’re used to the environment.  They’re used to working in people’s houses, out on the side of the road, in the streets, in jail cells, that type of thing.  So our goal with simulation and this whole facility was to use it all.”

cae healthcare ems simulators

Hendrickson: “We can run up to 7 separate stations with our cameras and our cubes and never have any crossover, never have any conflict, and be able to run them all as true to life as possible.  Complete suspension of belief for the student”.

Featured Advertisement:

“To date we’ve had very little problems with the CAE Healthcare manikins.  We’re able to use them in our tunnel system, we’re able to use them in cars.  Have we had breakdowns and have we had some issues? Absolutely, but the customer service has been superb.  We break something, we report it, and usually within 7-10 days a fix has been given to us or they come out and repair.  And, we’ve been tough on them.  We’ve broken probably more arms than anybody else with CAE Healthcare.  In fact I know that’s a fact because CAE Healthcare has asked “what do you guys do, how come you have so many broken arms”.  And it’s just the way we treat ‘em.  But repair has been wonderful, customer service has been wonderful.  And I am not afraid – we are not afraid to take those manikins and run them in any environment here at the Public Safety Center.”

Oleson: “One of our biggest successes with deciding to go with CAE Healthcare and going operational is that connectivity has not been an issue whatsoever, from day one.  Our campus has actually sunk quite a bit of money into expanding, as Brian mentioned earlier, our connectivity out on the prop yard which coincidentally is the largest footprint of this 9 acre site – is our prop yard.  Once we got comfortable that first semester with running it here out of the classroom and didn’t really experience any issues because we were only running maybe 1-2 manikins at a time.  Now we’re running 4 concurrently, all day long.  And, since that expansion has gone out in the prop yard, we’ve not really had any network lag issues to speak of and it’s been fairly seamless.”

Hendrickson: “I tell all of the people that come in and are helping out with simulation that they are only limited by their own lack of creativity.  That simulation just allows them to be creative, to think outside of the box, to teach students things that they may not see in an EMS career – maybe once or twice, or to teach them things that they’re going to see everyday. So simulation is buy in from everybody, it’s a group effort.”

Be sure to watch the video above to really get a sense of how powerful this simulation program is. Brian, David, and their simulation team have done an amazing job at creating realistic learning environments for their paramedic program through medical simulation. Kudos to the administrative leadership behind Victor Valley College for having the courage to build such a powerful place to teach the civil service professionals of tomorrow. Thanks to Richard Kuschinsky and Kevin King of CAE Healthcare for their continuous support of simulation educators and for helping HealthySim share this amazing story with you today!

To learn more visit:

VVC Regional Public Safety Training Center



Sponsored Advertisement:

TEDxTalk From PhD RN Elaine Meyer “On Being Present, Not Perfect” in Healthcare

tedtalk medical simulation

At IMSH 2015 I had the privilege of meeting Elaine C. Meyer, PhD, RN, in her capacity as Chair of the Affiliations committee for the Society of Simulation in Healthcare, and the Director of the Institute for Professionalism & Ethical Practice at Boston Children’s Hospital. Learning about her role as Associate Professor of Psychology at Harvard Medical School, Elaine and I started to talk about our shared mission to better the world by addressing the changes that need to come into healthcare communication. She informed me of her TEDxTalk on the very subject and I knew we had to share it on HealthySim! In her intimate talk, Dr. Meyer draws on both professional and personal experience to illustrate the profound gaps in healthcare communication and how to close them.

On Being Present, Not Perfect

The conversations that matter most in healthcare are often the most sensitive and challenging.  From conveying serious diagnoses to ethical quandaries surrounding end-of-life care, these conversations are the bedrock of the patient-provider relationship.  When they go well, patients’ health outcomes, trust, and satisfaction with care are enhanced.  In her highly regarded TEDTalk, “On Being Present, Not Perfect” Elaine C. Meyer, PhD, RN draws on both professional and personal experience to illustrate the profound gaps in healthcare communication and how to close them.  She unveils her vision to establish an emotional standard of care for patients and their families through honest, direct and genuine healthcare conversations.  She introduces the “one-room schoolhouse” educational approach and shares the Wizard of Oz metaphor blending Courage, Brains and Heart to guide healthcare conversations.  She also provides a helpful companion Facilitator’s Guide to deepen the learning potential of the Talk.

Elaine suggested to me at IMSH, that sometimes, change comes one conversation at a time. If this talk touches you, please share with your colleagues, friends and family. Together, we can help spread the word that these healthcare conversations matter deeply and that, indeed, we are called upon to be present, not perfect.

For more information, visit the Institute for Professionalism and Ethical Practice or email Elaine!

Konsiderate.com Medical Simulation Product Review Website Changes Name to KeyIn.to

konsiderate keyin

Konsiderate, the world’s largest platform for medical simulation product/service ratings and reviews, has just announced their new name “KeyIn”. The team behind KeyIn recently completed a three month entrepreneurial startup accelerator program funded by the Vegas Tech Fund and the CEO of Zappos: Tony Hsieh. During the program the team identified their core values: passionate, adaptable, contributing, insightful, integrity, approachable, and reliable.

While reviewing what those core values meant to the founders, they all agreed that Konsiderate, while fun to say, was not as approachable as another name could be. Interviewing some of the now 1300 simulation champions from around the world who have connected to the website in the past year, the team kept on hearing they wanted to “key in” to peer reviews to make informed purchasing decisions. It wasn’t long before the idea hit that to “key in” was exactly what the team hoped users could do! The team has registered KeyIn.to as the new domain web address for the website (note: .to is a domain name like .com).

Currently there are over 225 product reviews on KeyIn.to on products ranging from a $20 box of simulated medication to $2M A/V performance analysis systems. Creating an account is free for simulation champions through either their professional work email address or LinkedIn profile.

Start reading and writing your medical simulation reviews today on
KeyIn.to !

Texas Tarleton State University Seeks Simulation Technology Specialist

tarleton state university simulation

Institution: Tarleton State University

Location: Stephenville, TX

Position Title: Simulation Technology Specialist – Nursing Program

Salary Range (pending qualifications): $55,500 – $66,000

Responsibilities: Coordinates Nursing Simulation labs; Maintains simulation manikins; Researches and tests new technologies as they relate to healthcare training and assessment objectives (simulation). Coordinates, schedules, and provides individual and group training sessions for faculty and staff on various topics related to technologies used for human patient simulation and various clinical simulation technologies; Maintains system upgrades for EMS Simulation software; Programs simulation scenarios.

Qualifications: Bachelor’s degree; 3 years of experience supporting faculty in the operation of skills assessment technologies; Professional work experience with simulation-related programs and technology, particularly those technologies that are immersive, hands-on and provide an environment that emulates the space in which learners will serve for their careers. Tarleton State University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action/Veterans/Disability Employer

Application Process: Interested applicants apply online by visiting our employment website at https://jobs.tarleton.edu.

Want to feature your job listing? Start at our healthcare simulation jobs page to learn more!

Endovascular Simulation & Educational Environment Video Resource Material From Mentice

endovascular simulation resource videos

Mentice shares that this free “Endovascular Educational Environment Video Material” is “all you need to know from basics of sheath, catheter size, shape selection to role reversal training and procedure communication. There is also some team training psychology in there somewhere too!”.  If you are teaching such procedures with simulation this video series is worth reviewing! This continues the online resources from Mentice we have shared earlier including:

Video Series Includes:

  1. The Basics of Sheath’s and Catheters – This Mentice clinical tutorial discusses the differences between interventional catheters and sheaths and how to properly identify each device.
  2. Procedure Communication, Training to the physician – How incorporating simulation training can improve team communication and flow of procedure.
  3. Understanding the Metric Report – Breaking down the information that is provided at the completion of each procedure performed such as complications, tools and devices used and pre and post treatment vessel analysis.
  4. Role Reversal using Simulation – This video talks about how you can utilize simulation to practice and role play each team members responsibilities and duties in the procedure environment.
  5. Patient Recorder & Monitoring Report – An introduction to a unique training program and offering for persons who monitor and record procedures. A great tool for nursing and technical programs.
  6. Procedure Report: A Step by Step Guide – This video will guide the viewer on how to access the details and metrics produced during each procedure and how to best utilize this information.
  7. Understanding the User Interface – This video will walk the user through all the information and data that is provided at the beginning of each procedure and discusses opportunities for both learners and educators on how to best use this resource.
  8. Basic Catheter Skills – A quick look at how simulation can help operators practice and learn basic and advanced catheter skills.

Watch all the Endovascular Education Simulation videos for free thanks to Mentice!

Sponsored Advertisement:

New Free Simulation Scenario Exchange Database from SIM-one

free simulation sceanarios

Proven Scenario Resources, Peer-Reviewed & Free!

Introducing the SIM Scenario Exchange—an online repository of simulation scenarios, tools and templates. Open to all healthcare professions, disciplines and sectors, the Exchange fosters the improvement of simulation practices, facilitates knowledge transfer and helps simulationists save time. The Exchange was developed with funds from Ontario’s Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (MOHLTC) and Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities (MTCU) in response to the community’s demand. SIM-one would like to thank Ontario simulationists who contributed to the development of the Exchange.

“The Exchange is a free and open resource made possible by the support of the healthcare simulation community,” said Dr. Tim Willett, SIM-one’s Director of R&D, who led the development of the Exchange. “The Exchange features an intuitive design that allows users to easily find scenarios and tools based on specific needs.”

At the click of the screen, users can search for simulation scenarios, scenario development tools and templates, and learner/scenario assessment tools for evaluation and research. In addition, users can contribute, modify and adapt resources on the Exchange.

The SIM Scenario Exchange™ is trans-professional (supporting scenarios and resources in all health professions) and trans-disciplinary. It supports excellence in simulation-based education by providing evidence-based, practice-informed and tested simulation scenarios – many of which are peer-reviewed.

Recent Scenario Contributions

  • Unstable Bradycardia — Contributed by Pam Morgan Professions: Medicine, Nursing, Practical Nursing
  • Venous air or carbon dioxide embolus — Contributed by Pam Morgan Professions: Medicine, Nursing, Practical Nursing
  • Malignant Hyperthermia — Contributed by Pam Morgan Professions: Medicine, Nursing, Practical Nursing
  • Community Home Visit with Postpartum Patient — Contributed by Karyn Taplay Professions: Nursing

Read the full press release here or visit the Free Simulation Scenario Database on SIM-one’s website.

University of Iowa Seeks Nursing Clinical Education & Simulation Center Manager

university of iowa school of nursing education manager

The University of Iowa College of Nursing seeks to recruit a full time Nursing Clinical Education Center (NCEC) Manager responsible for the daily operations of the NCEC. The NCEC Manager supports all operations through planning, coordination and evaluation of all NCEC events, including simulation based education. This position is responsible for scheduling management, supervising staff, monitoring finances, maintaining policies and procedures, and managing day to day operational needs of the facility and College of Nursing (CoN) simulation program. The NCEC Manager provides guidance to all staff working for the College of Nursing within the NCEC and provides a central point of collaboration with University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics (UIHC) staff and volunteers in supporting their simulated learning activities. Key areas of responsibility and characteristic responsibilities include:

Operational Support and Management:

  • Monitor schedules and utilization of NCEC space and equipment to ensure coordination between the College of Nursing and UIHC.
  • Administrate scheduling software database for desktop and virtual platforms; includes training and managing all user types and system maintenance. NCEC Manager and select NCEC staff will discern approval statuses for reservations of the NCEC.
  • Develop, update, maintain, and enforce NCEC policies and procedures. Oversee building and equipment maintenance, including small renovation projects. Provide support for NCEC visitor guided tours.


Manage funding allocated to the NCEC, analyze expenditures, and project future costs. Review products for purchase; negotiate pricing and product specifications; approve and/or complete purchases.

Simulation Operations/Information Management:

  • Assist faculty in creating simulation scenarios to accomplish instructional and/or research goals and provide support in the simulation programming and the coordination of all medical equipment.
  • Determine and program audio visual (AV) needs and requirements as requested by lead faculty involving audio video systems (recording video capture, basic hardware functionality and processing), video postproduction editing, and integrating video into course management systems.
  • Collaborate with faculty and Instructional Services Coordinator as needed during learning activities (such as manipulating simulator responses through software, annotating data, or moulage).
  • Support follow up required after learning activities (such as post-course documentation and archiving activities).
  • Orient and provide ongoing training to faculty and students in proper simulation techniques.
  • Recommend updates and propose new simulation, audiovisual and other software technology for consideration.


Hire, train, and supervise College of Nursing staff and volunteers who work within the NCEC.

For more detailed information about this position opening including required qualifications, and to apply, please visit our website at medical simulation jobs and reference Requisition #66885. 

The University of Iowa is an equal opportunity / affirmative action employer. All qualified applicants are encouraged to apply and will receive consideration for employment free from discrimination on the basis of race, creed, color, national origin, age, sex, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, religion, associational preference, status as a qualified individual with a disability, or status as a protected veteran.


Ellen Cram, PhD, RN

Want to feature your job listing? Start at our medical simulation jobs page to learn more! 

INACSL Research Advisor Seeks Support for Facilitator Competency Rubric

rubric for simulation facilitators

Kim Leighton PhD, MSN, Assistant Dean, Research and Simulation Faculty Development DeVry Medical International and Research Advisor for the International Nursing Association for Clinical Simulation and Learning is looking for some assistance with upcoming research:

As many of you are aware, we have been working to develop a Facilitator Competency Rubric for simulation facilitators. Even before the NCSBN study results, we knew that we needed to have competent facilitators but have had no way to measure that competency! The tool has been developed over the past two years with a lot of input from audiences at simulation conferences and we are now collecting data for the psychometric analysis. We are hoping to finish this part of the study over the summer but find that we need more data collection sites. Does your school have simulation learning opportunities for undergraduate nursing students over the summer? Would you be interested in participating? If so, please contact me at kleighton@devry.edu for additional information! Our IRB only covers US schools for this study; however, if you are located outside the US and are interested, please let me know as that will be the next study!

Contact information: Kim Leighton; 402-617-1401; kleighton@devry.edu. Look forward to hearing from you!

Supported Organization:

SimGHOSTS 2015 USA Early-Bird Registration Ends Today!



The 5th annual healthcare simulation technology hands-on training event SimGHOSTS is being hosted by the Cedars-Sinai Women’s Guild Simulation Center this August 4th-7th in sunny Los Angeles California.

Early-bird registration ends today so sign up now for a big discount!

SimGHOSTS provides educational support for simulation technicians or clinical educators responsible for operating healthcare simulation technology. The courses offered range from beginner to advanced in all categories, including:

  • Manikin programming and repair
  • Audio/visual system design, integration and consolidation
  • IT networking and debugging
  • Trauma moulage makeup
  • Video production and editing
  • Team communication and technical leadership
  • Medical pharmacology for non-healthcare staff
  • Professional development workshops
  • And much more…

Receive training and explore the latest technologies from 20 leading simulation vendors including Level 3 Healthcare, Laerdal Medical, CAE Healthcare, Gaumard Scientific, Pocket Nurse, B-Line Medical, EMS and many more!

Fun Event with Serious Value

“Everyone involved in operating simulation needs to be at SimGHOSTS!” -North Central Texas College Health Sciences Sim Coordinator Amy Wise. Watch what other champs have to say.

There are only a handful of $425.00 early-bird registrations left so sign up now to guarantee the best passes and hotel rates. Use discount code “FIFTHTIME” for early bird rate which ends today! Registration includes complimentary annual subscription to our global community website valued at $135.00 USD.

Learn more at SimGHOSTS.org!

Dr. Kenneth Gilpin Shares Why Sometimes We Can Do More Harm Than Good Through Medical Simulation

negative feedback in medical simulation

Last week at SimGHOSTS Australia 2015, CAE Healthcare sponsored the plenary session by Dr. Kenneth Gilpin BSc MB ChB FRCA FANZCA, Senior Lecturer University of New England, Australia – who spoke on “Negative Learning in Healthcare Simulation”. During the talk he argued that negative learning is a problem in our community and proposed that physiological modeling some tools to reduce negative learning. Dr. Gilpin demonstrated how the aviation industry regularly examines simulation training for negative learning — which means that learners build unintended habits during the simulation exercise which they carry over to real life engagements. In aviation, examples come from pilots first learning how to deal with stalls on one type of aircraft unwittingly crashing when actually flying on a different type of aircraft.

AviationWeek.com highlights how the problem became identified and corrected in commercial aviation:

“The training standards before 2012 unwittingly led to stall recovery success in terms of lost altitude rather than the need to reduce angle of attack and aerodynamic load on the wing by immediately pushing the elevator control forward—the universally accepted solution to stalls that had been ignored in training.

To succeed, pilots would begin the maneuver at a medium altitude, slow down and hand-fly the aircraft, with the elevator trim set so it would not cause pitch-up problems when full power was brought in on the first warning of a stall. The net result was a programmed reaction to give power more priority than pitch, a fatal mistake in many accidents. Actual stalls were not required nor were they allowed in the simulators because the aerodynamic models driving the systems did not accurately reflect the non-linear behavior of an aircraft in the stall and post-stall regime.

It is unclear how long it will take pilots to undo years of ingrained training. “There are so many professionals on the line that have habit patterns they are not going to give up,” says Clarke McNeace, a former Southwest Airlines pilot who is now vice president of flight training and standards at Aviation Performance Solutions (APS) in Amsterdam. “We have an entire industry of simulator instructors and line pilots who have the traditional stall recovery method ingrained. It’s going to be a long way down the road.” McNeace, who teaches upset prevention and recovery training (UPRT) at APS, says he is nonetheless encouraged that professional pilots coming for training in the past two years have told him they have “stopped doing it the old way” in their training departments.

Creating scenarios that produce the physiological response of surprise or startle in a pilot, while not introducing negative training in the recovery of the aircraft, will be key to effective next-generation flight training.” Read the full article on AviationWeek.com.

Dr. Gilpin reminded us that the following areas in medical simulation can cause negative feedback:

  • Simulation scenarios being “accelerated in time” to demonstrate the effects of medications.
  • Simulator plastics requiring physical actions of learners that will not translate in real life (ie intubation techniques)
  • Simulations can generalize archetypal disease symptoms in medicine, manifesting “classical presentations” which are not always realistic.

He then recommended that we explore our scenario templates and consider all the possible negative training outcomes inherent in our simulations in-order to make these notes known to learners. Even mentioning the known limitations of our simulation scenarios can mean the difference between success and failure with patient outcomes.

The presentation was recorded and will be made available shortly thanks to CAE Healthcare on SimGHOSTS.org.