Message from the ASSH Chair

Message from the ASSH Chair - January 2015

Dear ASSH Members,

I am hoping that you all have managed to have at least a short break with family and friends during the holiday period. The New Year has commenced with a bang, or at least a trip to New Orleans for the International Meeting for Simulation in Healthcare (IMSH). IMSH is the Society for Simulation in Healthcare’s (SSH) annual meeting and three of the ASSH committee are invited to attend each year. This year your representatives were Michelle Kelly (past Chair), Kirsty Freeman (Deputy Chair and SimHealth Convenor) and myself as the ASSH Chair. There were many other members of ASSH there including Julian Van Dijk (Co-Convenor SimHealth) and Tess Vawser (ASSH Committee Member).

I think the enthusiasm by our membership for the IMSH meeting highlights the relationship between ASSH and SSH. I felt that the Australians had quite a high profile at the meeting including an opening plenary by Professor Harry Owen, members on working party and committees, numerous presentations and posters, and of course the Aussies were there in force at every social event.  Kirsty took every opportunity to publicise SimHealth 2015 to the wider simulation community. 

During the meeting your ASSH representatives, Michelle, Kirsty and myself, managed to participate on several working parties and meet with several key groups including the SSH executive. These types of events allow ASSH to consolidate the Australian position in healthcare simulation and continue to influence this on a world stage. 

I would encourage those who have not activated their associate membership with SSH to contact the Simulation Australasia office for a token and instructions on how to activate it. Please email for more information. We have a limited number of free tokens remaining and after that a heavily subsidised associate membership with SSH will be available to the ASSH membership. There are many benefits of this membership including access to the Simulation in Healthcare Journal, access to SimConnect an online worldwide simulation community and discounted registration fees at the annual SSH meeting (IMSH).

Now on to plans for 2015.  High on the ASSH committee’s priorities for this year is to develop our affiliations with other simulation societies, organisations and groups. To this end we will be working closely with the Simulation Australasia Board and office to develop agreements and avenues for widening our simulation community. This is being led by Tess Vawser and Cate McIntosh. I would also encourage you to join one of the ASSH special interest groups and if there isn’t one that meets your needs perhaps contacting us to form one. If anyone is interested in this, or wanting more information, could they please contact the Simulation Australasia Office at:

ASSH is also keen to continue our relationship with the government at both state/territory and federal levels as the agency of choice for health simulation related advice. To this end we had meetings with the Department of Health Australia and the jurisdictional Simulation Leads to promote ASSH’s position in this arena. Both meetings I think were useful to all attendees.

Lastly can I encourage the membership to utilise SimNET, the online resource site for simulation education. If you haven’t visited for a while you will be in for a big surprise as it has really grown. You will find generic position description, simulation provider directories and other resources.  This site also now holds a very large library of simulation scenarios and other simulation resources developed by groups across Australia as part of the commonwealth funding for healthcare simulation. Tap into these simulation resources and take your program to new heights.

Take care, submit your SimHealth abstracts and hopefully we will catch up at SimHealth in Adelaide in August.


Stephanie O’Regan
Chair - Australian Society for Simulation in Healthcare (ASSH)

Dear ASSH Members,

Planning is well underway for SimHealth 2015, the 12th Annual Conference for ASSH to once again be held at the Adelaide Convention Centre from Monday 17 August to Friday 21 August 2015.

This year’s conference will explore the theme “Finding the Balance”. With a mixture of international and local speakers, we invite you to join us for five days of thought-provoking discussion, information-sharing, along with access to the latest technologies in the exhibition hall. Our keynote speaks include:

  • Dr Ken Catchpole - Director, Surgical Safety and Human Factors Research at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center
  • Doris Østergaard - Professor, Medical Education and Simulation at Copenhagen University, and
  • Dr Janice Palaganas - Associate Director at the Institute for Medical Simulation

The Organising Committee's top priority is in providing the opportunity for delegates to contribute to making this conference a “must-attend” event for all involved in healthcare simulation. With abstract submissions closing on the 25th February 2015 we invite you to reflect and share on how your simulation-based initiatives have investigated the relationship between education and outcomes. We would like to hear of your work in improving patient safety and clinical outcomes and well as how you have used simulation in improving education pedagogy and the associated results. Visit for more information.

We are always looking at new initiatives and 2015 will see more delegate and vendor engagement opportunities, with activities such as a social media photo competition and speed networking; sessions dedicated to our special interest groups, to name but a few.

We encourage ASSH members to get involved where they can, so if you are interested in maybe chairing a session during the conference, or have a great idea that we can implement please email me via

Best Wishes,

Kirsty Freeman
Co-Convenor SimHealth 2015