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Participatory Methodology for Simulated Participant case writing

Claire M. Condron and Claire Mulhall RCSI SIM

Participatory Methodology for Simulated Participant case writing

Training healthcare professionals (HCPs) to work in today’s health service requires authentic learning opportunities to encourage engagement in empathic, sensitive, and appropriate context-dependent skills practice.  As we know, simulated participants (SPs) support the acquisition of vital skills through repetitive practice with feedback.  Evidence-based practice assumes a narrative-interpretive paradigm, where a patient’s experience of illness is singular and context-specific. Utilising narrative in the education of health professionals can benefit clinical practice, learner engagement, and the overall patient experience by increasing the clinician’s awareness and appreciation for the impact of healthcare systems on patients’ experiences and perceptions. What we learn from stories is very different from other forms of knowledge transfer - it is not simply cognition, but something deeply empathic. However, medical training often forces learners to condense patients’ stories and ignore their narrative subtleties in the interest of brevity and efficiency. Using participatory methodology to create educational cases facilitates patient involvement in HPs training and can give voice, a nuanced insight to lived experiences, and a context rich in authentic patient-specific dialogue.  The inclusion of the authentic voices of service users has potential to impact and shape the attitudes of HCPs, drive social accountability, and improve alignment between the health professional workforce and societal needs.  Unfortunately, the simulation case scripts for SP’s typically neglect authentic patient voices in their design.  Our field needs strategies to integrate the complete and diverse range of patient voices and perspectives in order to truly reflect patient-centered learning.  We can leverage patient and public involvement (PPI) in the education of HCPs by employing participatory methodology to generate authentic patient-centered learning resources. This approach would expand diversity and inclusion in the curriculum, so that we might better represent our patient population and promote humanism in clinical practice. 

This workshop aims to provide an innovative approach to patient involvement in experiential learning case development and the shaping of personal stories into sustainable, deliverable, and generalizable learning opportunities. 

Learning Objectives

  • Recognize the importance of PPI for health professional’s education.
  • Demonstrate participatory methodologies to design simulation scenarios
  • Discuss Narrative Capture Methodology to write authentic cases.

Session Description and timings

The Pre-brief – 15 mins

  • Welcome / Introduce faculty with a brief biography
  • Orientate to the session learning objectives
  • Ground rules and expectations for a psychologically safe learning environment will be agreed.
  • Extended participant introductions and expectations. Icebreaker activity

Think Pair Share (Small group exercise) - 15 mins

  • Participants will be asked to reflect and share their experiences of scenario creation in small groups to understand the current state of the art
  • Who and how we write patient scenarios
  • How does the patient profile emerge?

Group discussion - 15 mins (moderated by roving faculty). 

  • The group discussions aim to form consensus on key values for scenario design where everyone's opinions are heard and understood, and knowledge is created. The groups will be asked to elect a spokesperson to share key ideas with the larger group.

Instruction and Practice - 15 mins

  • A slide presentation covering key concepts including: narrative in HP education, public-patient involvement, participatory design, co-creation

Case studies presentation - 15 mins

  • Experience from case studies at RCSI using participatory methodology for scenario design

If/then implementation intentions - a design task small group exercise - 15 mins

Identify opportunities to integrate PPI into your SP program

Facilitated group discussion - 10 mins

  • Groups will be guided to reflect on a shared experience in a way that builds understanding and spurs coordinated action sifting for insights and shaping new directions.  Feedback, from both faculty and peers in the group, will help embed learning and aid transfer to real situations.

The wrap up - 5 Mins

  • To highlight key take home messages.  Learning through investigation guides the learner to explore, compare, and analyze resources which reflect the concepts under consideration.  Suggestions for further reading to invite participants to investigate further on their own will be provided in the wrap up.

Educational Methods

  • Ice breaker activity
  • Think pair share small group activity
  • Case study presentation
  • Facilitated large group discussion to provide opportunities for elaboration and interactivity facilitated by faculty.
  • Small groups design task

Expected Impact
Create, collaboration, and networking opportunities for educators to augment the co-design of simulated participant methodology to give voice to patient/service users and provide authentic learning experiences.

Target Audience
Educators interested in using patient and public narratives to create simulated cases

Key words
Patient voice, public patient involvement, simulation patient/participant case writing, narrative capture methodology, participatory methodology

Max 20 participants