Natividad Receives Provisional Accreditation for its Hospital-Based Simulation Program

  • October 18, 2018

Computer-driven manikins simulate real-world medical emergencies to enhance staff preparedness

Salinas, Calif. (October 18, 2018)—Natividad has received provisional accreditation by the Society for Simulation in Healthcare for its simulation program. It is the second hospital in California to achieve this status.

Natividad’s simulation lab features state-of-the-art technology providing physicians and nurses with real-world experience in a controlled environment. Using three computer-driven manikins — an adult male, a pregnant adult female and an infant — the lab can simulate real-world medical scenarios ranging from postpartum hemorrhage to multiple-injury car crashes to pulmonary embolisms. The manikins, which are programmed to respond to physical care and medications, can mimic human breathing, bodily fluids, convulsions, and blinking.

“Simulation is about providing Natividad’s health care providers with the skill level and application knowledge to prepare for low-frequency but highly complex medical events,” said Susan Saunders, RN, Director of Nursing Education at Natividad. “As the only teaching hospital in Monterey County, the simulation program is also a valuable training tool for educating future doctors and nurses.”

The manikins are operated in a simulated-reality hospital room with two beds and patient monitors, a video monitoring system, and an observation and debriefing area. Participants gain hands-on experience through simulation training and video playback.

Nationwide, simulation programs similar to Natividad’s demonstrate improved patient outcomes and lower incidence of adverse events, Saunders said. In granting provisional accreditation, the Society for Simulation in Healthcare examined Natividad’s processes and outcomes in assessment, research, teaching, education, and systems integration.

“We are extremely proud of the Society for Simulation in Healthcare designation, and we look forward to bringing this valuable training technology to not only Natividad’s staff but community health care providers throughout the county,” said Tom McKay, PhD, Education and Simulation Coordinator at Natividad.

Natividad is currently coordinating with local emergency medical response personnel to run simulation scenarios for the pre-hospital treatment of patients, McKay said.

Natividad receives a framed certificate at the International Meeting on Simulation in Healthcare (IMSH) on Saturday, January 26, 2019. For more information about the Natividad Simulation program, please contact Director of Nursing Education Susan Saunders, RN ( or Education and Simulation Coordinator Tom McKay, PhD (