The December 2016 Edition of the ASSH eNews Features:

  • Letter from the ASSH Chair: December 2016
  • Australasian Simulation Congress Highlights and Awards
  • Reporting about Simulation Activities: University of Newcastle
  • Reporting about Simulation Activities: The Wide Bay Hospital and Health Simulation Team
  • Reporting about Simulation Activities: Mobile Simulation Centre HETI NSW
  • 5 Minutes With: Steve Guinea

Letter from the ASSH Chair

December 2016

Dear ASSH members,

I am always surprised how quickly this time of year comes around, but as a year draws to a close it allows us to pause (if only briefly) to reflect on the year passed and plan and envisage the year ahead. Over the last 12 months, the ASSH executive has worked diligently pursuing healthcare simulation certification and fellowship pathways for the members. The first step in the process was successfully achieved in late September with ASSH and The Society of Simulation in Healthcare (SSH) signing the official agreement for the certification of healthcare simulation educators through the SSH program. The next step will be working with SSH to review the current examination questions and contextualise them to an Australian perspective. ASSH is also in discussion with the International Nursing Association for Clinical Simulation and Learning (INACSL) to provide an alternate pathway through their Fellowship program. We will keep you up to date with how this is progressing.

The certification and fellowship pathways were the vision of Robert O’Brien and I would like to take the opportunity to thank Rob for his dedication over the last 12 months as ASSH Chair. The ASSH executive wish him well in his new ventures and all the success in his future. 

A significant congratulations also needs to be extended to the Australasian Simulation Congress organising committee. This group of volunteers put together a fantastic program showcasing national and international initiatives in simulation and I am looking forward to the 2017 conference in Sydney.

As announced at the ASSH Members meeting at the Congress, Stephen Guinea commenced a position on the ASSH executive. We currently have one position on the executive vacant and will very soon be sending out an expression of interest to the membership to join the committee. We always want new ideas and fresh eyes, so please put your name forward if you are interested.

2017 will no doubt be another exciting and fast paced year in the realm of healthcare simulation. There are many new and exciting initiatives on the table in collaboration with Simulation Australasia and on behalf of the ASSH executive committee we are looking forward to providing additional value to our members and growing simulation within healthcare.

If you have any questions or suggestions for the ASSH executive, please don’t hesitate to email me on

Stay safe over the Christmas break and I look forward to working with you all in 2017.

Kind regards,

Melanie Barlow
Chair, Australian Society for Simulation in Healthcare (ASSH)



Australasian Simulation Congress
Highlights and Awards

SimCongress Synopsis thanks to Luke Wainwright and Jessica Stokes-Parish

The opening presentations from Major General Gus McLachlan and Prof Dave Snowden set the standard for entire congress - Major General Gus McLachlan made sense not just for military simulation but for health as well. He discussed the problems with their equipment and summed it up by saying “if the training doesn’t reflect the real environment we have failed.” Prof Dave Snowden discussed complex and challenging issues including cognitive activation and metaphorical training environments and delivered them in a way that was particularly relevant and contextualized. His story about climbing down a 30 metre castle to retrieve his daughters bedtime teddy bear to describe heuristic models was inspiring.

With the melting pot of Engineers, Health experts, Serious Gamers and a whole host more, there was much to take in and competition for time was at the maximum. We were challenged to consider story telling through pictures or language to influence our learning, reminded of the importance of deliberate practice, inspired by learner-centre approaches to debriefing and motivated to explore big ideas. Beyond the keynotes were conversations and opportunities to share, and it was an opportunity to reflect on where we have been and where we are going.

Once again, we would like to make note of the team that formed 2016’s committee and thank them for their effort and time: Julian Van Djik, Jessica Stokes-Parish, Robert O'Brien, Cyle Sprick & Ingrid Wolfsberger.

In planning for 2017, the new committee would like to invite your engagement, as it is, after all, your Congress. Call for Submissions will be released in the coming weeks, with the submission portal due to open in January 2017. The 2017 Committee will be comprised of Jessica Stokes-Parish, Ingrid Wolfsberger, Cyle Sprick & Victoria Brazil. Keep the calendar free for August 28 - 31 at the International Convention Centre in Sydney for what promises to be an exciting and interactive forum to share, be inspired and connect.

Jessica Stokes-Parish
SimHealth Convenor, 2017 Australasian Simulation Congress




Reporting about Simulation Activities

University of Newcastle

Please describe your simulation service/centre.

•    Chameleon Simulation Centre is designed to support health simulation and skills education. As a part on the University of Newcastle the centre supports undergraduate education as the primary role and facilitates activities for further education, train the trainer and video production. 
•    Chameleon offers simulation based education and training courses including face to face session and focused workshops.

How do they measure success in your organisation and how do you collect the data?
Constant monitoring of the centre performance is monitored by online survey techniques. As a part of development of our facilitators and tutors, we feedback data after each session with the faculty session debrief. To improve our service we review all feedback responsively.

How do you compile the report?
Our annual report is designed to be informative and engaging.

We include:
•    Background information with location and purpose;
•    Courses and facilities;
•    Review of data;
•    Stories on achievements;
•    Our services.

What are your 3 top tips for someone starting out with reporting?
•    Simulation is fun and engaging so, model “fun and engaging” in your report and capture what you have on offer with words and photos.
•    Use best practice as a gold standard for reporting as a benchmarking system.
•    Include the data in written and graphic form. 

What governance systems do you have in place for reporting?
•    Overall governance for simulation based Education.
•    Simulated Patient Program Governance.

Jessica Stokes-Parrish, ASSH committee member, discussed the reporting of Simulation Activities with Jan Roche from University of Newcastle.



Reporting about Simulation Activities

The Wide Bay Hospital and Health Simulation Team

Please describe your simulation service/centre.
The Wide Bay Hospital and health Service has a team of 10 designated simulation staff (3 Simulation educators and 7 simulation coordinators). There are two Simulation Rooms in Maryborough, two in Bundaberg, one in Hervey Bay and one each in Gayndah and Monto. 

How do they measure success in your organisation and how do you collect the data?
The simulation team has a set of KPIs with which to measure their productivity and success against. Data is collected on the number of simulation supported workshops, the number of insitu simulation sessions and of these how many were multidisciplinary or interdisciplinary. This data is then broken down further to look at engagement with postgraduate and undergraduate professionals and from what stream they are from. We then look at what training was provided and what Accreditation standards were embedded into the simulation event. The data is collated on our Learning Management system called Train station.

How do you compile the report?
The report is on an accepted district template that is easy to track. The traffic light system is used and then presented at District wide simulation monthly meetings. This highlights areas where simulation is embedded on their training calendar but also enables the team to look at opportunities to improve. This report becomes part of a greater data report for minuted higher level meetings that include executive management meetings, university collaborative meetings, clinical governance / education meetings, etc.

What are your 3 top tips for someone starting out with reporting?
•    Be very objective on what you want to measure and thus report on.
•    Involve the key stakeholders on the data that they require. For example, our University partners want data on only how many of their own students are engaged in insitu simulation.
•    Validation and Accuracy builds confidence in the reporting system.

What governance systems do you have in place for reporting?
•    There is confidence in our Learning Management system, Train station. Train station is able to highlight duplications. Train station is able to identify when annual requirements are due.
•    Validation of data accuracy via individual auditing through the PAD system is done at unit level. There are regular downloading of staff changes to train station form payroll systems.

Luke Wainwright, ASSH committee member, reported from Ken Karrasch Simulation Manager at Wide Bay Hospital & Health Service,.




Reporting about Simulation Activities

Mobile Simulation Centre HETI NSW

How do you collect data throughout the year?
Collection of sessions, names, signature and sites. Specific KPIs are agreed upon such as number of LHDs visited or specialised sessions to be delivered. When using task trainers I collect data on the number of people who used the task trainers multiplied by the hours so I can generate the hours used by a specific trainer (good to work out usage, wear and tear etc.).

I also measure episodes of education and total numbers of staff trained. For example one person may attend 6 sessions – this equates to 6 episodes of education and one person. I also keep data breakdowns of which professions the participants are for example; doctor, RN, EN, educator, Paramedic, Justice health and Forensic Mental Health Staff, allied health staff and students. I have another area called ‘other’ for those attendees who don’t actually fit into the data collection criteria.
I also collect data on the kilometers the Mobile Simulation Centre travels, the sites visited.
Evaluations are undertaken at the end of each session

How do you compile the report?
I have a series of spreadsheets for each element of data and report it quarterly with 3, 6, 9 and 12 month cumulative totals.

This data is reported to the State-wide SLE committee and the HETI executive and the NSW Ministry of health.

What are your 3 top tips for someone starting out with reporting?
•    Work out what you need to collect and set the parameters and measurements tools early.
•    Use a consistent method of reporting so that over a period of time there is comparative data.
•    Share with your colleagues how the data is collected and collated, so that during periods when others are collecting and collating data there are no anomalies in the data – this is confusing and reduces the validity of your data.

Tod Adams, ASSH committee member and Manager Rural Mobile Simulation Centre at HETI.



5 Minutes With...

Steve Guinea

Steve is new to the ASSH Executive, being elected in August this year. Steve is a Senior Lecturer and the Faculty Coordinator of Health Simulation for the Faculty of Health Sciences, Australian Catholic University. Steve is particularly interested in exploring workplace learning theory to inform simulation design.  

Fast Facts

Education: Bachelor of Nursing, Cert IV Workplace Training and Assessment, Graduate Diploma Vocational Training and Development, PhD.

Current Role: Coordinator of Health Simulation, Faculty of Health Sciences, Australian Catholic University.

Particular area of Interest: Exploring how simulation contributes to learning. Using simulation to facilitate international nursing students’ ability to participate in clinical practice. Sustainable simulation programs.

Favourite Holiday Destination: For a quick recharge in winter, I cannot think of anywhere better that Daylesford in Victoria (think wood fire, couch…). 

Hobbies: Ich lerne Deutsch (but I’m not very good). 
Coffee/Tea: Coffee and tea.


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