27th April 2021

SBRI: Simulation Technology for Healthcare Training

Closing date – 28th May 2021

Pre Covid-19 Tracheostomy training was delivered through a combination of online education and face-to-face simulation training; however, the latter has become increasingly difficult in the current climate due to the challenges of social distancing, lack of training facilities and the need for self-isolation. As a result, NHS staff have had reduced access to this necessary training which is needed to maintain their clinical competencies and to ensure the best care of patients with tracheostomies.

The problem is currently occurring in every Health Board within NHS Wales and across the UK.  Even prior to the challenges described above, access to training has been variable and of differing standards. Previously training has been delivered on a 1:1 basis using very low fidelity simulation involving a basic mannequin, which has no resemblance to the clinical environment.

We have attempted to deliver simulation training via online platforms but with very limited success due to the challenges of interacting and the inability to get ‘hands-on’ experience. As such this has now ceased as it was deemed not effective and the need for future fit training has been recognised that takes advantage of emerging digital and technology advancements.

Whilst the first phase of this challenge would initially be focused on Tracheostomy training there is potential for the application of the innovation to be used in many other areas, including basic, intermediate, and advanced life support. Furthermore, the technology could be used for specific simulation training across all specialities across all Health Boards.

This challenge is reacting to an unprecedented global pandemic.  A rapid Phase 1 SBRI will identify solutions for further development. Subsequent activity will support selected solutions through next phases and explore the potential to expand the scope of the challenge to other areas of training need across the NHS.

We are looking to identify and demonstrate rapid simulation technology solutions in an operational environment, solutions must be suitable for rapid deployment and for successful solutions we envisage full accreditation to be in place ready for ‘real world’ deployment by no later than October 2021.

As an example of the way in which the use of simulation training could be expanded following the competition, the Critical Care team has identified common procedures and scenarios they would prioritise once this capability is available to them.









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