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Stanford building houses one of world's largest medical simulation facilities


This Wednesday, Stanford's School of Medicine will officially dedicate the Li Ka Shing Center for Learning and Knowledge, the school's first new education building in 50 years. The five-level limestone and glass facility was designed to spur dramatic changes in the way physicians are trained, and it houses one of the largest and most advanced medical simulation facilities in the world.

In the latest issue of Inside Stanford Medicine, David Gaba, MD, associate dean for immersive and simulation-based learning, explains how the center's mock hospital on the center's ground level will advance medical education for students and physicians:

This closes the gap between understanding something in a book sense, or from osmosis by being a member of a team and observing and watching role models, to actually being able to do it, and to do it under not only routine conditions but under conditions that are really unusual or very critical. Historically, the only way to learn these skills was an apprenticeship model, in which you would have increasing levels of responsibility, from being an observer, which is a lot of what we do as medical students, to then being interns and residents and doing these things yourself but under very close supervision by faculty. Yet, at some point, the young doctor has to go from being under supervision to being “it."

... If we want to follow the model of other industries, like aviation, these activities have to be something that all people in health care do on a regular basis. The vision we have is that professionals in health care will cycle through different kinds of modalities of simulation - sometimes as individuals, sometimes in teams - and do different things in different ways throughout an entire career.

Gaba talked more about simulation in this 1:2:1 podcast; in a previous podcast, Dean Philip Pizzo, MD, discussed the new building and how he believes it will transform medical education.

Previously: A new era in education at Stanford's medical school
Photo by Steve Fisch

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