Accreditation gives an institution more than bragging rights. It indicates to those interested in a program of study that you have fulfilled a number of requirements as determined by a third party. The Society for Simulation in Healthcare (SSH) is the top accrediting organization for healthcare simulation programs.
SSH Council for Accreditation of Healthcare Simulation Programs has two annual review cycles with deadlines of December 15 and May 15, which means they are currently accepting applications. The five areas for accreditation are Core, Assessment, Research, Teaching/Education, and Systems Integration.
All applicants must apply for core; the remaining areas are optional. This is a summary of the core standards SSH is looking for; there are seven sections.
Core Accreditation Standards
Mission and Governance
This focuses on the stated mission of the simulation program, plus its organizational structure, review and approval processes, and expressed vision.
This step asks about fiscal resources, oversight of simulation activities, and written documentation of policies and procedures that assures the program meets its obligations and commitments.
This refers to the ability of the program to obtain, maintain, and support simulation equipment, technologies, and space. It also asks for a complete list of simulation activities, looking for an adequate number and variety for the students.
This focuses on faculty and staff experience and skills. It especially wants to see a strong candidate in the role of director and assure staff is oriented, supported, and evaluated in support of simulation activities.
SSH doesn’t want simulation programs to be static. It seeks details about the quality management program and how it helps continually improve program operations. It also assures the program identifies and addresses concerns and complaints.
This examines a statement of ethical standards.
Expanding the Field
This asks that the program extend into the simulation community via participation in professional societies and associations.
Worldwide, there are currently 87 SSH Accredited Programs, including the newest six:
Center for Disaster Relief Training and Research, Severance Hospital, Seoul, Korea
Center for Clinical Simulation at Maimonides Medical Center, Brooklyn, NY
Centro de Simulacao Realistica – CSR at Sociedade Beneficente Israelista Brasileira Albert Einstein, Sao Paulo, Brazil
Clinical Simulation Center, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea
Health Science Simulation Center at Casper College, Casper, WY
Khalf Ahmad Al Habtoor Medical Simulation Center at Dubai Health Care City, Dubai, UAE