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Queen's School of Nursing leads Collaborative nursing education in clinical simulation

Published Wed Apr 30th 2014

News release PIF funding December 2013

It is widely recognized that nursing educational programs must regularly adapt clinical education requirements to changing health system realities and patient needs in order to ensure ongoing safety. To consolidate their learning, nursing students spend significant time in an integrated practicum at the end of their program, putting into practice their cumulative knowledge and skills. Earlier this year, the Council of Ontario Universities Office of Health Sciences (1) highlighted multiple challenges faced by nursing students as they transition into their role as registered nurses. Healthcare simulation is in an emerging and innovative field of education and there is significant evidence indicating the benefits of simulation-based training among undergraduate nursing students.

In 2005 the government provided a significant investment to Schools of Nursing across the province to purchase simulation equipment, providing support for the development of clinical simulations that have been integrated across the four years of undergraduate curriculum. Funding from the Productivity and Innovation Fund (PIF) will extend this work and support the redevelopment of the senior level integrated practicum to incorporate enhanced practice-based simulation scenarios to better prepare new graduates for the workplace.

The project, developed by Queen's University School of Nursing faculty in partnership with thirteen university schools of nursing, four colleges, and Ontario's Simulation Network (SIM-one), represents and unprecedented level of collaboration. The partnership will utilize the wealth of expertise across nursing campuses in Ontario to use best practices to develop new clinical simulation education modules and adapt existing modules to enhance transition into safe practice. Once developed, the modules will be available through open access by all universities and college partners. PIF funding also supports acquisition of new simulation equipment required for the newly developed scenarios through a consortium, providing the best value for Ontario taxpayers through bulk purchasing.

This exciting initiative brings innovative simulations to nursing students across Ontario to better prepare them for the demands of nursing jobs. It will provide a foundation for future collaboration among nursing educators, and can act be adopted successfully by other health professions and publicly-funded healthcare education/delivery organizations in Ontario.

For more information please contact Dr. Jennifer Medves, Director of the School of Nursing and Vice-Dean (Health Sciences).

(1) Council of Ontario Universities Office of Health Sciences (2013 Integrating Clinical Education into Ontario's Changing Health Care System. COU No. 881 (ISBN no. 0-88799-493-8).