SimGHOSTS Simulation Champion Award winner for September


Congratulations to the SimGHOSTS Simulation Champion for September 2018 - Emma Horsfield, Simulation Coordinator at Albury Wodonga Health (AWH) in Australia.


Emma was nominated for this award by a colleague who describes Emma as a passionate promoter and advocate for all things simulation.

Emma’s passion for simulation evolved from her work as a critical care nurse and an interest in health professional education. The technical aspects of simulation were completely unknown to her so she decided to set herself a personal challenge to become more technologically proficient which unleashed her inner geek. This motivated Emma to learn as much as she could about the technology and operations side of delivering simulations. It was winning the SimGHOSTS 2016 Australia Bug Busters competition that made Emma realize her capabilities as a simulation technologist were far greater than she thought. This has inspired her to encourage others to develop their technological skills and she has become a pioneer for utilisation of simulation technology in her workplace.

Emma was appointed to AWH’s first dedicated simulation role in 2015 and was responsible for integrating simulation-based education into the professional and student education at AWH. As a strong advocate for the use of simulation technology, Emma has established policies and procedures to support the simulation operations and education for all campuses of AWH, has trained many colleagues in the safe operation and troubleshooting of simulation equipment, and has established a simulated patient (SP) program within the hospital volunteer program. Recognising the importance of data, Emma has designed and built a data collection tool in Excel to collect and report on simulation use. In 2017 her dedication was recognized by being awarded the AWH Director of Nursing and Clinical Operations Commendation for contribution to the development of simulation services at Albury Wodonga Health.

The Simulation User Guide that Emma developed for Albury Wodonga Health has been integral in leading a culture of simulation education at AWH. As a multi-campus health service, having a resource and guide that is available to all staff across the facility is a critical part of embedding a culture of learning by simulation. The guide provides step by step 'how tos' for a range of simulation methodologies, a trouble shooting equipment guide, policies, procedures and a comprehensive debriefing guide.This means that trained educators and staff from across the health service can use the manual to support their simulation practice at any time, thus ensuring consistency in delivery and access to best practice in one place.     

Another of her notable achievements is recruiting and training colleagues to assist with a regular calendar of perioperative interprofessional insitu simulations. Emma was able to identify simulation champions within her workplace and form a collaborative team to plan, develop and execute peri-operative scenarios. As clinical colleagues showed interest in the simulation technology Emma encouraged them to learn more about it and was able to provide them with the training required to independently operate and troubleshoot equipment during simulations. She still has the only dedicated simulation role within the organization, but now has a network of colleagues across different departments who have joined in her passion for simulation and together they are successfully integrating quality simulation for health professional and students throughout the organization.

Generous with her time and expertise, Emma has presented at SimGHOSTS events in Australia in 2016 and 2018 and supports simulation users in her local community both formally by assisting with organization of and presenting at local professional development events, and informally through professional networks. Emma has just spent her Saturday assisting with a mass casualty earthquake simulation being held as part of the Australian Medical Students Association Rural Health Summit being held in Albury. Emma assisted with the planning, set-up, execution and debriefing of this simulation which involved over 200 people.

The SimGHOSTS team were unanimous in their support of Emma’s nomination and agree that she is a highly worthy recipient of this month’s award.  

Emma will receive an Award Certificate and a 3 month SimGHOSTS subscription for her nomination. Each July, voting for the Simulation Champion Trophy is opened featuring the monthly award winners from the previous 12 months. The winner is announced at our USA event in August and receives a trophy and a free registration to a SimGHOSTS event of their choice the following year. If you would like to nominate a Simulation Champion, please fill out the nomination form here.