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CHIPS Wins 2023 Innovation Award

The team from the UTHSC Center for Healthcare Improvement and Patient Simulation was honored today with a 2023 Innovation Award from Inside Memphis Business magazine and Memphis Magazine.

The Center for Healthcare Improvement and Patient Simulation (CHIPS) at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center was one of five recipients of the 2023 Innovation Awards presented today by Inside Memphis Business magazine and Memphis Magazine.

CHIPS was recognized for putting Memphis and Tennessee on the map for cutting-edge simulation training across all health care professions.

For more than a decade, the awards have honored individuals and teams on the front lines of moving Memphis forward. Today’s Innovation Awards breakfast was the first held in person since the COVID 19 pandemic.

“We thank you for your contributions to innovation and to Memphis,” Sam Cicci, senior editor of Memphis Magazine, said in introducing the winners at the event at Memphis Botanic Garden.

Jarrod Young, MBA, director of operations/technology and business development for CHIPS, accepted the award on behalf of the CHIPS team. Executive Director Tara Lemoine, DO, was unable to attend.

“It’s an honor to be recognized as a Memphis Magazine 2023 Innovation Award winner,” Young said. “I am incredibly proud of our program, our staff, and our university for their commitment to educational excellence.”

The team that operates the 45,000-square-foot building for health care simulation and interprofessional education on the UTHSC Memphis campus improves care for Tennessee by refining the skills of the people who will deliver it. They are also recognized as leaders and innovators nationally and internationally in the health care simulation community.

The state-of-the-art Center for Healthcare Improvement and Patient Simulation opened in 2018 and has served nearly 20,000 learners since then.

“As an accredited program that is internationally recognized, CHIPS is a leader in the field of health care simulation and a change agent for patient safety in the Mid-South,” Young said.

CHIPS opened in 2018 and has welcomed 19,410 learners through simulation events.

According to Dr. Lemoine, the use of simulation in health care training was fueled by a 1999 Institute of Medicine report, which acknowledged that health care failures led to unnecessary deaths and excessive medical costs nationally and internationally.

Simulation training was adopted and began to grow as a way to train health care workers before they treat humans. Simulations are used for training in complex clinical skills, communication, decision making, crisis resource management, and critical thinking. They also encourage teamwork that results in the most successful care.

Each floor of the three-story center houses a different aspect of simulation training. The first floor includes skills labs with multiple stations to allow students to focus on clinical skills and assessments. Additionally, a simulated home environment allows students to practice in-home patient care. The second floor includes a simulated acute-care setting resembling a hospital environment with patient rooms and a variety of high-tech patient simulators or manikins that can simulate everything from surgery to labor and delivery. The third floor features the Robert J. Kaplan, MD, Center for Clinical Skills, as well as a simulated community pharmacy. In the Kaplan Center’s 24 exam rooms, students interact with standardized patients (actors trained to portray patients) to enhance their clinical skills and communication.

Simulators mimic heart rates, pulses, heart sounds, and breathing sounds. The manikins closely replicate the responses, physiology, and anatomy of a real patient.

Simulation training helps students improve clinical and communications skills in a safe environment.

The CHIPS team is involved in the education of students, residents, fellows, and faculty across UTHSC. The center is accredited by the Society for Simulation in Healthcare. Additionally, the team also provides professional development for clinical providers in the community to further spread up-to-date training.

“The changing world of health care education demands the incorporation of innovative strategies, and access to simulation can transform individuals into competent professionals,” Dr. Lemoine said. “By harnessing technology, we can create competent health care providers that change our community’s health now and into the future.”

Other Innovation Award winners are: The Overton Park Shell on Wheels Initiative, the Tennis Memphis – Leftwich Tennis Center, Dr. Stephen R. Haynes and the Rhodes College Liberal Arts in Prison Program, Dr. Erno Lindner, University of Memphis, Drug Detection Technology Patent.

More information about the UTHSC Center for Health Care Improvement and Patient Simulation is available in its 2022 Annual Report.