Older people’s views and experiences of engagement in standardised patient simulation

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Abstract

Background - The last two decades have witnessed initiatives aimed at improving the care of older people, including educating nurses so that they are equipped with the skills to care for older people with frailty and complex multimorbidities. It has been suggested that involvement of older service-users in nurse education can facilitate the development of nurses’ caring skills by promoting understanding of the reality of older people’s situations. One method of involving older service-users is standardised patient simulation. While some recent studies have acknowledged the importance of considering standardised patients’ experiences and perceptions of simulation, to-date few have focused specifically on the experiences of older people. Methods - In this qualitative study, data was collected via focus groups whereby older people were invited to discuss their views and experiences of involvement in SPS. Data were analysed using open coding. Findings - Four themes emerged from the data, demonstrating that involving older people in SPS may be beneficial for their wellbeing. The four themes were: ‘using personal experiences to improve care’, ‘having a sense of purpose’, ‘preparation and support for SPS’, and ‘feeling appreciated’. Discussion - Whilst most participants reported that they enjoyed the SPS activities, engagement appeared to have had a much deeper significance for them. Many participants’ responses suggested that involvement assisted them to ‘make sense’ of their experiences of illness and healthcare, and also gave a sense of purpose, of belonging and of being valued. Conclusion - Findings support the need for nurse educators to consider developing SPS programmes that involve older people.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)154-158
JournalBMJ Simulation and Technology Enhanced Learning
Volume3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 13 May 2017

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