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Effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of embedded simulation in occupational therapy clinical practice education: study protocol for a randomised controlled trial

Imms, Christine, Chu, Eli Mang Yee, Guinea, Stephen, Sheppard, Loretta, Froude, Elspeth, Carter, Rob, Darzins, Susan, Ashby, Samantha, Gilbert-Hunt, Susan, Gribble, Nigel, Nicola-Richmond, Kelli, Penman, Merrolee, Gospodarevskaya, Elena, Mathieu, Erin and Symmons, Mark 2017, Effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of embedded simulation in occupational therapy clinical practice education: study protocol for a randomised controlled trial, Trials, vol. 18, pp. 1-16, doi: 10.1186/s13063-017-2087-0.

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Title Effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of embedded simulation in occupational therapy clinical practice education: study protocol for a randomised controlled trial
Author(s) Imms, Christine
Chu, Eli Mang Yee
Guinea, Stephen
Sheppard, Loretta
Froude, Elspeth
Carter, RobORCID iD for Carter, Rob orcid.org/0000-0002-1586-5619
Darzins, Susan
Ashby, Samantha
Gilbert-Hunt, Susan
Gribble, Nigel
Nicola-Richmond, KelliORCID iD for Nicola-Richmond, Kelli orcid.org/0000-0003-4874-5055
Penman, Merrolee
Gospodarevskaya, Elena
Mathieu, Erin
Symmons, Mark
Journal name Trials
Volume number 18
Article ID 345
Start page 1
End page 16
Total pages 16
Publisher BioMed Central
Place of publication London, Eng.
Publication date 2017-07-21
ISSN 1745-6215
Keyword(s) Clinical placement
Clinical reasoning
Cost
Education
Efficiency
Evaluation
Occupational therapy
Simulated clinical placement
Simulation
Trial
Summary BACKGROUND: Clinical placements are a critical component of the training for health professionals such as occupational therapists. However, with growing student enrolments in professional education courses and workload pressures on practitioners, it is increasingly difficult to find sufficient, suitable placements that satisfy program accreditation requirements. The professional accrediting body for occupational therapy in Australia allows up to 200 of the mandatory 1000 clinical placement hours to be completed via simulation activities, but evidence of effectiveness and efficiency for student learning outcomes is lacking. Increasingly placement providers charge a fee to host students, leading educators to consider whether providing an internal program might be a feasible alternative for a portion of placement hours. Economic analysis of the incremental costs and benefits of providing a traditional versus simulated placement is required to inform decision-making.

METHODS/DESIGN: This study is a pragmatic, non-inferiority, single-blind, multicentre, two-group randomised controlled trial (RCT) with an embedded economic analysis. The RCT will compare a block of 40 hours of simulated placement (intervention) with a 40-hour block of traditional placement (comparator), with a focus on student learning outcomes and delivery costs. Six universities will instigate the educational intervention within their respective occupational therapy courses, randomly assigning their cohort of students (1:1 allocation) to the simulated or traditional clinical placements. The primary outcome is achievement of professional behaviours (e.g. communication, clinical reasoning) as assessed by a post-placement written examination. Secondary outcomes include proportions passing the placement assessed using the Student Practice Evaluation Form-Revised, changes in student confidence pre-/post-placement, student and educator evaluation of the placement experience and cost-effectiveness of simulated versus traditional clinical placements. Comprehensive cost data will be collected for both the simulated and traditional placement programs at each site for economic evaluation.

DISCUSSION: Use of simulation in health-related fields like occupational therapy is common, but these activities usually relate to brief opportunities for isolated skill development. The simulated clinical placement evaluated in this trial is less common because it encapsulates a 5-day block of integrated activities, designed and delivered in a manner intended to emulate best-practice placement experiences. The planned study is rare due to inclusion of an economic analysis that aims to provide valuable information about the relationship between costs and outcomes across participating sites.
Language eng
DOI 10.1186/s13063-017-2087-0
Field of Research 140204 Economics of Education
140208 Health Economics
1102 Cardiovascular Medicine And Haematology
1103 Clinical Sciences
Socio Economic Objective 930503 Resourcing of Education and Training Systems
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2017, The Authors
Free to Read? Yes
Use Rights Creative Commons Attribution licence
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30099355

Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Population Health
Open Access Collection
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Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure that permission has been obtained for items included in DRO. If you believe that your rights have been infringed by this repository, please contact drosupport@deakin.edu.au.