Establishing the Learning Environment

Published 03/08/2022

Establishing the Learning Environment

It is important to orientate the participants to the bed space/simulation room and equipment prior to beginning the scenario. It not only allays anxiety it allows participants to ask questions that may otherwise distract them during the sim eg. “Will I be able to hear chest sounds on the mannequin?” 

The Environment

  • Nothing that you come across in the sim room will be beyond your skill set and experience – you will be able to manage every scenario safely 

  • You will meet various characters in the sim room from one scenario to the next – make no assumptions 

  • The sim room is set up like an ICU bedspace 

  • Every patient has a bedside folder 

The Equipment

  • If you need to change settings on the ventilator, you need to actually do it. Verbalise what you are doing as it is difficult to see on the monitor. If you are unfamiliar with the ventilator, the bedside nurse will be able to help 

  • If you need to bolus/change the rates of infusions you need to actually do it 

  • There is a phone – the number attached to it will take you to switch board. You can ask for anyone you like. If you want to put a “code”/”arrest call” out, you need to physically do it. 

  • The defibrillator is live – we will stop a scenario if defibrillator practice is unsafe 

  • If you want to administer a therapy – fluids/IV meds, you need to physically do it 

  • If you want further access/monitoring etc, then ask a faculty member 

  • There are limitations to sim man – whilst you will be able to auscultate the lungs and hear appropriate breath sounds/noises, palpate pulses, assess pupils etc things like pallor, tracheal deviation, capillary refil time, can’t be realistically demonstrated. Verbalise what you are assessing, and a faculty member will give you the relevant information  

  • If sim man is not sedated/intubated you will be able to talk to him 

  • There is an airway trolley, and an arrest trolley. Other kit and medications are available at your request.


  • If the patient has had a chest x-ray it will appear on screen/be given to you at your request 

  • If you want to send ABGs/bloods then ask the bedside nurse – it will take a realistic amount of time to come back.


  • Things will occur in real time – if you send your colleagues away to get something, it will take a real amount of time for them to return 

  • There may be a nurse or doctor in the scenario played by faculty. They know the scenario and will never try to mislead you. They may give you important information eg. the patient is having a seizure 

  • If you need extra help then you can verbally “Push the alarm bell” 

  • If you are unsure of something, or something is not clear, ask the bedside nurse 

  • Work within your skill set 

  • We have done our best to make things as realistic as possible, but some things are difficult to simulate convincingly. We ask that you “buy in” and engage as best you can. 

  • Confidentiality – nothing that goes on today forms any part of an assessment, and we will not disclose any information to others. In return we ask you to keep the content to yourselves.  

  • Most of all have fun!