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Clinical Effectiveness and Patient Safety

Center of Economic Excellence



Award Amount

$5 million

External Funding Above Match

$12.1 million

Research Focus

Quality and safety of patient care and improving the medical informatics aspects of data acquisition and the evaluation of health information technoology on the qulity and safety of clinical care processes and outsomes. The Center also focuses on developing South Carolina as a training center for physicians and other health professions using human simulators and sophisticated software-based training scenarios.

University Partners

Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC)
University of South Carolina

Private Sector Partner

Health Sciences South Carolina

This SmartState Center is transforming the clinical education of medical, nursingm and allied health students through the use of human simulation technology and innovative software-driven training scenarios. The ultimate goals are to improve the quality and safety of patient care, advance new evidence-based methods of training of the healthcare workforce, and become an international focal point for health sciences research in education and safety.

In February 2006, Dr. John Schaefer was recruited as a SmartState Endowed Chair with the goal of establishing a statewide network of collaborating simulation centers. Now called Healthcare Simulation South Carolina, this sophisticated network includes ten partners:

  • Clemson University College of Nursing
  • Greenville Hospital System
  • Greenville Technical College
  • Horry-Georgetown Technical College
  • Medical University of South Carolina
  • University of South Carolina (USC) College of Nursing
  • USC Aiken
  • USC Beaufort College of Nursing
  • USC Upstate

Since 2008, the Simulation Center network has provided more than 60,000 student encounters. More than 60 active courses have been created and are in use throughout South Carolina. Data captured from the training simulations are helping Dr. Schaefer and his research team identify the most effective, evidence-based ways to provide clinical training to physicians, nurses, and allied health professionals, and in the process, to develop new curricula.

The Center’s revolutionary human simulation curricula have been successfully commercialized. Dr. Schaefer co-founded SimTunes, LLC, a spinoff company to develop simulation educational technology. In 2010, SimTunes sublicensed its educational products and technology to Laerdal Medical, a Norway-based medical simulation products company. Laerdal markets SimTunes’ more than 84 educational scenario sets and 600 individual scenarios worldwide.

Through the work of Dr. Jihad Obeid, the Center also is developing a statewide informatics infrastructure to support and promote clinical research and ultimately patient care.

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