Packing her bags and bundling up a husband and two children, Mater Education’s Director of Simulation Melanie Barlow traded Australian beaches and sunshine for thermals and the blistering cold in Boston. Why? To undertake a six month fellowship with world-renowned leaders in simulation, the Center for Medical Simulation (CMS).
Building upon her considerable expertise in simulation, Melanie was keen to experience how different simulation centres operate, while also working on her PhD. Melanie said the fellowship allowed her to expand on these skills, and so much more.
“Deepening my skills in debriefing and learning more about educational research were the key driving forces for choosing this fellowship, however I learnt a lot about myself,” Melanie said.
“I spent considerable one-on-one time with the CMS faculty, including Executive Director Jenny Rudolph, discussing all things leadership and how to build and develop strong, collaborative teams,” Melanie said.
Melanie says she is looking forward to growing and developing educational research that will actively assist the global simulation communities and advance the field to help generate new evidence back at Mater.
“From my learnings in Boston I hope to continue to grow Mater Education’s offerings of simulation faculty, develop opportunities and to better utilise the expertise we have at Mater. By training more people in simulation-based learning, I truly believe we can continue to strengthen the skills and knowledge of our Mater staff, continuously improve our systems and positively impact patient safety,” Melanie said.
“But that’s not to say that Mater isn’t already well established in simulation. As a simulation centre that is only seven years old, based on benchmarking against other well established simulation centres, Mater Education’s simulation program is ahead of the game in terms of quality of the training, the experience of the faculty and the successful collaborative relationship with a health service.”
“Mater has a comprehensively trained and highly skilled simulation faculty, with three simulation faculty who have now undertaken CMS fellowships—something which no other centre in Australia has achieved,” Melanie said.
“We are also the only Australian Affiliate Partner of CMS, and one of only four in the world. As part of this important relationship, we have exclusive access to the resources and experience of this network of international leaders in the field of clinical simulation—as well as the opportunity to undertake a once in a life time fellowship, like I just have.”