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What is a Simulated Patient?

The use of Simulated Patients involves the use of individuals trained as educators to portray the roles of patients, family members where real-life scenarios are acted out. Simulated Patients act and react to the communication skills presented by the health care worker. Simulated Patient encounters allow students to learn about situations they may not be able to manage alone in a real clinical setting, or where the use of a real patient may be inappropriate; for example, counseling cancer patients. Our Simulated Patients will use a checklist to record the details of the encounter and provide feedback to the learner. The Simulated Patient is carefully trained and briefed to facilitate a realistic physician/patient encounter. The Simulated Patient presents not only the history and physical findings, but uses body language and emotional and personality characteristics as well.

What is a Standardized Patient?

A Standardized Patient provides consistent and standard responses and is mostly used extensively in testing of clinical skills of students, usually as a part of an Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE). Standardized Patients are likely to provide more reliable and consistent reactions to questions asked by health care providers. The Standardized Patient will respond to questions and situations exactly the same regardless of how the healthcare worker interacts with the Standardized Patient.