Simulation in obstetrics is a widely accepted and valuable tool that benefits all levels of learners from medical students to maternal-fetal medicine subspecialists. What began as an adjunct to medical education now has a rapidly expanding role in acquisition of new and innovative procedures, team and unit training, and safety and quality initiatives. The number of obstetric simulation peer-reviewed reports has increased exponentially in recent years, yet only a small percentage of reports primarily addresses clinical outcomes. Studies link simulation to a reduction in neonatal brachial plexus injury, maternal trauma related to forceps delivery, response to postpartum hemorrhage, efficiency in performing emergent cesarean delivery, and neonatal mortality. Simulation is a required component in accredited obstetrics and gynecology residency training programs. Obstetric simulation has a role in the certification of physicians, and simulation hands-on courses may be used to meet maintenance of certification requirements. As simulation platforms are validated, they are likely to be incorporated into the certification process as a means of assessing technical and communication skills. Accrediting, certifying, professional, quality, and safety organizations have invested in simulation committees, interest groups, curricula, and continuing medical education courses. Support for research, including large multicenter trials, are needed to inform further implementation. Research and development should lead to lower costs and improved simulators. As the public, government, licensing, and credentialing institutions explore means of improving patient safety, expansion of simulation in obstetrics is inevitable.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Obstetrics and Gynecology