Associate Dean, PGME Glen Bandiera present award to Dr. Chris Hicks

Associate Dean, PGME Glen Bandiera present award to Dr. Chris Hicks

Crisis Simulation – A Curriculum Innovation

Since 2003, Postgraduate Medical Education has recognized the academic contribution of faculty members through the PG Excellence Awards. Faculty members can be recognized in one of two categories:

  • Development/Innovation – This category recognizes leadership and improvements in curriculum design and/or evaluation.
  • Teaching Performance/Mentorship/Advocacy – This category acknowledges continuous or long-term excellence in education and service.

The 2015-16 recipient of the PG Excellence Award in Development/Innovation was Dr. Chris Hicks. His unique curricula — Crisis Resources for Emergency Workers (CREW) — uses simulation to teach appropriate group interactions in the Emergency Department.

Dr. Hicks began work on the simulation curriculum by establishing a steering committee comprised of experts from three core EM training sites, as well as simulation technologists, respiratory therapists and nurses. Using Royal College residency training program goals and objectives as a guideline, he identified gaps in the curriculum and collaborated with residents to develop a new training structure and format.

This process created a two-year junior and senior simulation-based training program. The program consists of a minimum of twenty full-scale simulation sessions, each three hours in duration, hosted by passionate and engaging staff mentors. Simulation techniques used throughout the curriculum include: high fidelity simulation with a computer-operated mannequin, standardized patients, task trainers and cadaver labs. Over the course of their residency training, each resident is able to train in a comprehensive, evidence-based simulation curriculum each year.

Dr. Hicks’ work on developing a comprehensive simulation curriculum for the emergency medicine program has been a tremendous asset to residency education at the University of Toronto.

In the past 3 years, approximately 80 emergency medicine resident have gone through the CREW curriculum, in addition to 25 nurses and other health care professionals

For more information on 2015-16 PG awards and publications, please visit: