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Simulation Center One of Only 20 Accredited Sites
Palmetto Health-University of South Carolina School of Medicine Simulation Center becomes one of only 20 accredited training sites in the world

The Society for Simulation in Healthcare (SSH) has accredited the Palmetto Health-University of South Carolina School of Medicine Simulation Center, making it one of only 20 such training facilities in the world. The three-year accreditation establishes the program as one that embraces best practices in simulation, including continuous quality review, instructor development and effective teaching methodologies. SSH is the only multi-disciplinary, international society dedicated to the advancement of simulation in health care.

“It’s difficult to overstate how significant an achievement this is,” said Eric Brown, M.D., the center’s director and also a member of the SSH board of directors. “Securing this accreditation puts us in very elite company.”

Opened in 2007 as a collaborative effort between Palmetto Health and the University of South Carolina, the “Sim Center” hosts team-based simulation training for medical students, nurses, resident physicians and the public in everything from individual patient care to full-scale disaster response scenarios. Healthcare simulations generally have four main purposes: education, assessment, research and health system quality integration.

“What this does is set us up on a continuous cycle of quality improvement that will only grow our reputation and ensure the success of our program,” said Brown.

“Simulation plays an important role in medical education,” said Richard Hoppmann, M.D., dean of the USC School of Medicine. “The simulation training our students and resident physicians receive improves the safety and quality of care provided to patients. Our current and future clinicians will welcome the opportunity to train at an accredited simulation center.”

Earning this international accreditation reflects the center’s high standards in everything from its management and staff to its facilities and technology. “We are thrilled the Simulation Center was awarded this certification on its first attempt,” said Katherine Stephens, Ph.D., vice president for medical education and research at Palmetto Health. “Dr. Brown and his skilled technical staff have developed programs to ensure that our clinicians maintain their skills and provide safe, quality care for our patients, and this accreditation acknowledges that high level of training we provide.”

Rapidly emerging as a unique medical discipline, simulation is at the frontier of healthcare education. “It really offers some distinct advantages over traditional methods of education,” said Brown. “Since most of the scenarios are scripted in advance, our trainers can design unique clinical cases that introduce systems challenges or communications issues, and remove some of the variables of real clinical practice that can hinder learning and retention. Hence, trainees’ performance is measurable in a way that classroom learning doesn’t always allow for.”

The Palmetto Health-USC SOM Simulation Center is located at 15 Medical Park on the Palmetto Health Richland campus. For more information about the facility, staff and curriculum, visit