Why Debriefing Is Critical to Simulation Training Success

Why Debriefing Is Critical to Simulation Training Success

Why Debriefing Is Critical to Simulation Training Success 2000 1335 Level 3 Healthcare

Debriefing Improves Simulation Education—Here’s How

Have you ever watched a video of yourself and wondered why in the world you were talking so loudly, playing with your hair, or doing something else that you weren’t aware of at the time? Video can reveal a lot of details that get overlooked in the moment.

Simulation training is quickly becoming the most effective way to provide healthcare education, but for best results, you should take it a step further and record then evaluate the training. While simulation scenarios help students practice their skills and prepare for high-pressure, life-and-death stakes in a safe, low-risk environment, the real learning takes place when students and instructors review the scenario afterwards to see what went well and where they can improve.

Does your simulation training program accommodate recording each scenario for the critical debriefing step? Here are three reasons it should.

3 Ways Debriefing Improves Healthcare Simulation Training

  1. Professionals can give better feedback. Recording the scenario and then debriefing it allows an expert to review student performance and provide feedback and expertise they can’t usually offer in the moment. While instructors are usually part of a simulation training, in a high-pressure simulation scenario where everyone is working hard to save a “patient’s” life, there isn’t time to step back and go over the proper way to draw blood or check a heart rate. A recording allows instructors to review details that might have gone unnoticed in the heat of the moment and address or correct them in the less stressful debriefing environment.
  2. Students can see their own mistakes. Human error will never be completely eradicated from medical care, said Brandon Phillips, a former EMT and current simulation technology and operations specialist with Level 3 Healthcare, but effective healthcare simulation training can help minimize mistakes. In addition to the instructor feedback, seeing their own errors can make an even bigger impact on students. Simulation training is the “gold standard” in healthcare education, Brandon said, and debriefing is a critical part of that. Reviewing a recorded simulation can help students see mistakes they didn’t know they were making—and they can correct those mistakes before they impact real-life patient care.
  3. Students can apply lessons right away. A timestamped digital recording of a simulation scenario can be quickly and easily reviewed immediately by instructors and learners together. That means lessons can be applied immediately as well. For example, Brandon said he was once part of a simulation where pediatric nurses were treating a “patient” in respiratory distress. That “patient” went into cardiac arrest and the nurses weren’t able to revive him. An instructor-led debriefing after the scenario helped the nurses see where they could have done better. The very next day, a real-life patient with the same symptoms came to the hospital and those nurses were able to save his life. “Because of the training we did, we were able to save a life,” Brandon said. “That’s the best return on investment right there.”

Next Steps

Level 3 Healthcare’s SIMStation product line offers several user-friendly and affordable solutions for digital recording and effective debriefing of simulation trainings. A Level 3 Healthcare simulation system expert can help you choose the right simulation hardware and software for your budget to help you achieve the best results for your organization and your students. Learn more today.

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