Leveraging health care simulation technology for human factors research: Closing the gap between lab and bedside

Ellen S. Deutsch, Yue Dong, Louis P. Halamek, Michael A. Rosen, Jeffrey M. Taekman, John Rice

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Objective: We describe health care simulation, designed primarily for training, and provide examples of how human factors experts can collaborate with health care professionals and simulationists-experts in the design and implementation of simulation-to use contemporary simulation to improve health care delivery. Background: The need-and the opportunity-to apply human factors expertise in efforts to achieve improved health outcomes has never been greater. Health care is a complex adaptive system, and simulation is an effective and flexible tool that can be used by human factors experts to better understand and improve individual, team, and system performance within health care. Method: Expert opinion is presented, based on a panel delivered during the 2014 Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Health Care Symposium. Results: Diverse simulators, physically or virtually representing humans or human organs, and simulation applications in education, research, and systems analysis that may be of use to human factors experts are presented. Examples of simulation designed to improve individual, team, and system performance are provided, as are applications in computational modeling, research, and lifelong learning. Conclusion: The adoption or adaptation of current and future training and assessment simulation technologies and facilities provides opportunities for human factors research and engineering, with benefits for health care safety, quality, resilience, and efficiency. Application: Human factors experts, health care providers, and simulationists can use contemporary simulation equipment and techniques to study and improve health care delivery.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1082-1095
Number of pages14
JournalHuman Factors
Issue number7
StatePublished - Nov 1 2016


  • Health care
  • Health care quality
  • Patient safety
  • Simulation
  • Systems

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Human Factors and Ergonomics
  • Applied Psychology
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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