Standardized Patient Program goes virtual, provides students with telehealth experience

man holding computer of Zoom meeting with him and a woman
Colin Bachinski, a student in the social work program, conducts a virtual simulation via Zoom with standardized patient Julianne Bouwens.
Image credit - Valerie Wojciechowski

Grand Valley's Standardized Patient Program has launched a virtual component that allows students in the College of Health Professions, Kirkhof College of Nursing and School of Social Work to continue to gain clinical experience.

Cindy Bartman, standardized patient program coordinator, said telehealth software was installed last week in the Simulation Center, in the Cook-DeVos Center for Health Sciences, which provides opportunities for students to participate in remote simulation events with standardized patients.

Of the 130 adult SPs who work in the Simulation Center, Bartman said 60 have agreed to continue participating in remote events from their homes. SPs are community members trained to portray a patient in a health care setting, providing students with opportunities to practice and develop skills in a simulated clinical setting.

"It's great for our students and SPs," Bartman said. "SPs are excited to be able to continue connecting students and assisting them in their growth as emerging health care providers."

Colin Bachinski is in the first year of the Master's of Social Work program. He said the telehealth experience is a good tool for all health professions students.

"With more places like Pine Rest Christian Mental Health Services rolling out telehealth programs, it's great to say that I have experience through these simulations," Backinski said.

He said the peer feedback remains available as videos are archived for classmates and faculty members to critique.



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