What do you do when a 35-year-old construction worker falls off a roof?

This is the question that myself, as a Chief resident and simulation fellow at the time, and a team of over 40 other health care staff tackled together in a VGH Interdisciplinary Multistage Simulation exercise in June 2016.

Luckily, in this case, our 35-year-old construction worker was a mock patient. His arrival at the VGH Emergency Department was the start of a multi-disciplinary, multi-location simulation that places VGH teams at the forefront of medical education. A simulation that spans across multiple departments inside a working hospital is leading edge and VGH is one of the first hospitals to provide this type of training exercise.

The simulation involved three stages: arrival at the Emergency Department, patient transfer to the Operating Room (OR), and then to Post-Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU). Transitions can be dangerous points in a patient’s journey so this simulation was designed specifically to help the larger team better understand how we can work together to improve patient safety.

The team of 40 people included paramedics, OR and PACU physicians and nurses. Many participants expressed that before this simulation, they didn’t have a good idea of the flow between departments and how roles work in other departments. Because we were able to livestream and record the entire simulation, many more health care staff will have the opportunity to benefit from this experience.

What’s next? In situ simulation is definitely the way of the future! It was amazing to see different teams come together to solve complex problems and continually learn and grow as a highly skilled team. This is why I love working at VGH–I get to see innovation like this that could help people like you.

The good people at Grosvenor Americas have a reputation for investing in the best, so they have committed to matching donations to the VGH Emergency Department, up to $30,000, in the month of August. There’s only a week left so please give generously—it’ll mean a lot to me and my team.


Dr. Wesley Jang
Emergency Physician
Vancouver General Hospital