UNTHSC Regional Simulation Center
Simulation training has become increasingly valued in health sciences education, providing a realistic, yet low-risk, environment for students and healthcare providers to practice and learn new skills. The University of North Texas Health Science Center at Fort Worth (HSC) looked to broaden the role of this beneficial training tool even further with a center that could replicate more situations and serve a wider array of healthcare professionals within the university and in the greater community.
The first facility of its kind in the state of Texas, the Regional Simulation Center at HSC enables simulation scenarios without limitations.
In a safe and realistic environment, it provides invaluable hands-on training that can evolve along with changing healthcare practices.
The 17,000-square-foot center repurposes the ground floor of HSC’s Gibson D. Lewis Health Science Library in the heart of campus. It features a large procedural skills suite, 14 clinic exam rooms, a residential setting and several multi-purpose rooms that can be used for clinical simulations or group learning. Immersive virtual reality technology and interactive three-dimensional projection on the walls can simulate any number of settings, used in conjunction with life-like manikins for practicing real-world scenarios. Designed for universal access, spaces are modular and highly flexible to allow for varied uses, different learning styles and changing healthcare practices. The perimeter corridor that encircles the simulation rooms is also multi-functional, designed with extra width for use as a teaching/learning space and as a casual study/social space with access to natural light.
Truly multidisciplinary, the Regional Simulation Center is shared by five HSC programs, providing training to its health science students learning new procedures and its seasoned healthcare providers acquiring new skills. The center is also available to other healthcare entities in the region, including hospital personnel, emergency medical service providers, nursing home staffers and first responders. The center is expected to improve patient outcomes and patient safety, and become a key recruitment tool for attracting top students to HSC’s health science degree programs.