Message from the ASSH Chair

Having taken on the role of ASSH Chair in September at SimHealth 2013, it is early days in my new role. I have several years' experience of being on the ASSH Executive and look forward to building on the work of previous Chairs and committee members to advance the position of ASSH as the leading group of healthcare simulation in Australia. I would like to thank Debra Nestel as outgoing Chair for her commitment and work and look forward to her support as past-chair.

SimHealth and SimTecT were jointly held in Brisbane for the first time in several years. The feedback from numerous delegates was that they enjoyed the ambiance and opportunity to network across divisions - and play with the ‘other toys’ in the trade display area. Work will continue to streamline processes for the 2014 meeting which will again be jointly delivered in Adelaide (August 25–28). All sources of feedback from the 2013 joint meeting will be considered in planning for 2014.

ASSH is delighted to confirm our Convenor for SimHealth 2014 will be Kirsty Freeman, WA Country Health Service and Associate Professor Jennifer Weller, Centre for Medical and Health Sciences Education, University of Auckland, will be Scientific Convenor.

The ASSH executive will be actioning items from the recent member’s survey with assistance from the Simulation Australia office staff. One key point is to ensure communications to ASSH members are clearly delineated to ensure information is received and that members can contribute in numerous ways to the activities emerging in healthcare simulation. We will always welcome your input and direction in this rapidly emerging field of simulation.

Over the last 18 months or so, Simulation Australia (which has always been the ‘parent’ organisation of ASSH) has worked to clarify governance and process issues across all Divisions. One point of good governance is for regular renewal of executive members. The next call for nominations will be around June or July 2014 and another opportunity for you to contribute to the growth and direction of ASSH in more substantial ways. Health is also now well represented on the Simulation Australia Board by three people – two new members in Professor Debra Nestel and Susan Walker, and Associate Professor Marcus Watson continuing his directorship. 

I aim to post a number of communiqués to ASSH members over the next 10 months about the work and activities undertaken on your behalf by the executive committee. Another way of providing feedback about your needs and suggestions is through local networks and events. These could be jointly offered with Simulation Australia or informal gatherings or teleconferences. More information on plans to enhance state-based initiatives will follow.

A reminder of the opportunities for ASSH members in 2013 - 2014:

  • Use and populate the SimNet directory with valuable information for our rapidly growing community
  • Collaborate with state-based networks or attend a series of showcase events for a nominal charge hosted by Simulation Australia. These events seek to leverage benefits from alignment with members from all Divisions of Simulation Australia.
  • Contribute to and/or attend the Adelaide SimHealth conference in August, which will again be co-located with SimTecT
  • Like SimNet, another exciting project funded by Health Workforce Australia addresses the issue of Certification in healthcare simulation. The initial work is being undertaken now.
  • Online MySimAust portal which contains over 15 years of research papers and other member only benefits

 

Finally I would like to acknowledge the contributions of 2 ASSH executive members who have stepped down in 2013. Leonie Watterson and Peter Hill have both volunteered untold hours and high levels of commitment to the growth and development of ASSH and related activities and projects. Both continue to be engaged with HWA related projects with ASSH or in their substantive ‘day jobs’.

I look forward to more exiting activities and receiving your feedback during the next 10 months.

Best wishes

Michelle Kelly
ASSH Chair