Simulation center inaugurated at FNPH

Health Minister Dasho Dechen Wangmo inaugurated the Centre of Simulation-based Training (CSBT) at FNPH on 17 September

LHAKPA TSHERING | Thimphu

The Khesar Gyalpo University of Medical Sciences of Bhutan (KGUMSB) has added a new feather in its cap with the inauguration of the Centre of Simulation-based Training (CSBT) at the Faculty of Nursing and Public Health (FNPH) on 17 September.

The advanced simulation center is equipped with a state-of-art facility from low fidelity to high-end fidelity mannequins worth over Nu. 70 million would encourage the learners to achieve a high level of competencies.

“Unit A’ of the center houses major simulation areas like Intensive Care Units, operation theatres, labor rooms, and a multipurpose area while the “unit B’ has Pre-hospital areas for simulation, a debriefing area, and a multipurpose area.

The center will provide hands-on training for medical students and as well as health workers that will allow them to enhance or re-create procedural skills and handle critical emergencies in a safe environment.

This experiential learning laboratory will be used in imparting curriculum-based teaching to students of the university and also provide continuous professional development for health workers of the country.

It will cater to the enhancement of medical and health education in the country and promote innovative teaching-learning by integrating simulation-based education into traditional methods.

Also, it will improve the quality of care, patient safety, and outcome with advanced knowledge, and skills through high-quality simulation-based training and advanced evidence-based practice by simulation-based education to ensure high reliability and sustainability in healthcare.

Simulation is also an important element for improving the quality of healthcare and patient safety. It provides an interactive, immersive method to enhance or re-create the experiences that occur in the healthcare environment.

KGUMSB says that there is growing evidence that simulation-based training increases adherence to best practices, improves clinical outcomes, and reduces the risk of harm and costs associated with care.

“Training and practicing on simulators before working on real-life patients would help in improving patient safety and quality of care. Having simulation-based training can standardize the quality of training and put to use the limited resources efficiently and effectively,” it stated.

It adds that the traditional way of teaching-learning where the skills were directly taught and practiced on patients in the hospitals is not only unethical to experiment and practice on patients with the risk of causing harm to patients but also risk mitigation.

While no formal ATLS courses were conducted, the trauma simulators are used during trauma course training. The national referral hospital, KGUMSB, and the health ministry have conducted a few lifesaving skills courses.

However, simulation-based training is confronted with challenges such lack of integration of simulation-based education in the curriculum while patient safety has been compromised due to limited competencies.

The other challenges include no transparency and accountability on what simulators are available and owned by whom and lack of ownership, administrative support, maintenance, and suboptimal use of simulators, among others.

In addition, issues related to space, lifesaving skills courses including limited recurrent budget available to train healthcare providers, and lack of expertise also hamper the simulation-based training.

The establishment of the center was initiated in early 2020 when the KGUMSB signed the Technical Cooperation Project (TCP) titled “Strengthening Medical Education in the Country” with the JICA Office Bhutan.

Meanwhile, to enhance the quality of medical education provided to health-human resources to deliver sustainable health services in the country, KGUMSB and JICA Office Bhutan are implementing a 5-year TCP titled “strengthening the medical education” in August 2020.

In addition, the TCP has also supported the university in developing a one-stop platform for all the online CPD and CME courses developed at the university.

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