Advancing simulation: The SIM-one Seniors Care Project

Advancing simulation: The SIM-one Seniors Care Project
June 05, 2013

The SIM-one "Seniors Care Project" is advancing simulation-based learning in Personal Support Worker (PSW) education and training.

Project background

The Seniors Care Project, SIM-one’s first initiative as an independent organization, is a strategic province-wide investment in simulation equipment to enhance PSW training across Ontario. The project was funded by the MOHLTC and in support of the Province’s Seniors Care Strategy.

As part of its Seniors Care Strategy, the Province has committed to funding 3 million additional PSW hours for seniors in need. Effective implementation of the Seniors Care Strategy will rely on well-educated and highly skilled PSWs who can effectively support seniors living at home and collaborate with other community-based healthcare professionals supporting seniors living at home.

SIM-one’s role was to coordinate a strategic, province-wide investment in simulation equipment to enhance PSW training to support seniors aging at home across the Ontario community college sector. The allocated budget was $2,400,000.

Simulation resources for PSW training

SIM-one allocated over $2,300,000 in one-time funds to PSW programs within Ontario’s publicly funded education and training sector to purchase best practices simulation equipment to support seniors living at home. The project fundamentally and significantly improved access to training for PSW learners. As a result of this funding, over 95% of all PSW learners in the Province will have access to best practices in simulation-based training to support seniors living at home. Only 27% of PSW learners received simulation-based training in an at-home environment prior to the project.

Defining current knowledge and needs

Two environmental scans were completed as part of the Project: “Interprofessional education and care for seniors” and “Simulation for at-home care of seniors”. Both these scans identified research literature and some current Ontario initiatives specifically describing simulation-based and inter-professional practices for at-home care. Knowledge gaps identified by the scans will inform the planning of two needs assessments related to at-home seniors’ care.

Online training for PSWs

Online educational modules have been produced to support best practices for knowledge transfer incorporating simulation-based training into PSW curricula. These modules will be made available to all PSW faculty, via the SIM-one website, to assist them as they incorporate simulation-based training into the PSW curricula starting with the Fall 2013 intake.

SIM-one would like to thank Georgian College for allowing us to use their facilities for the production of these modules.

View the online modules >

Seniors Care Project completion

SIM-one will build upon the success of the Seniors Care Project. SIM-one is proposing funding for innovative simulation-based initiatives for PSWs, at-home care needs assessments, faculty development in home care simulation, and the creation of an inter-professional continuing education professional development program in at-home care.