Colin Rupp | The Society for Simulation in Healthcare









 I hope everyone enjoyed a rich and robust experience at the IMSH.  It is hard to believe that was a month ago!  

 We formally rolled out our Fellowship Standards, this is a huge addition to our accreditation process and hope to announce next year the programs who successfully became accredited with their Fellowship Program.  Additionally, last week we launched our Accreditation On-Line course.  Driven by a team of energetic and efficient members of our reviewers team, led by Alaina Harrington, this program is an outstanding method to get hands on experience in developing your accreditation submission.  Last week was full of interactive activities that the course participants from all over were able to work on their mission / vision statements in real time with peer feedback.  Everyone was engaged and the course was fully subscribed with a wait list of over fifteen additional people.  More courses will be opened up soon.

We are undertaking the enormous task of reviewing and updating the Accreditation standards.  Every five years, our Council reviews each and every standard to assure relevance, relatability, and reliability in responses.  Our course of action will be driven by this deep dive into the process improvement to assure our accreditation stays relevant.  If you have suggestions, updates and / or are interested in participating in this activity, please let us know, we need everyone’s input on this important project.

We are looking to the future to recognize additional programs, reaccredit current programs and help our provisional programs become accredited.  Thank you for remaining in our family of accredited programs, we appreciate you!

Subcommittee Update - Reviewer Training

New Reviewer Training and Advanced Reviewer Training

The Accreditation Council members and several other accreditors provided Accreditation Reviewer Training courses at IMSH 2020.  On Saturday, the council held a Basic Reviewer Training that focused on reviewers new to the organization and the process.  Sunday was the Advanced Reviewer, in which a few “curveballs” were thrown into the “simulated” site review.  Each course was 4-hours. The participants were provided materials ahead of time to prepare.  Council members and senior reviewers played the roles of the staff of the simulated program.

The value of this training is to improve interrater reliability of our reviewer teams as well as creating a formal onboarding process for new reviewers. During the training, there were many opportunities to ask questions, discuss documentation, and dialog the more challenging situations that may arise during a site review.

The learner feedback was extremely positive especially for the newer reviewers.  A few of the comments include:

What reviewers had to say about the training…

The training is invaluable for me as a reviewer. The training allows me to consider different scenarios that I may encounter while preparing me to communicate with sites when there may be questions or I may need more data to make a clear decision. 

Looking around the room, there are hundreds of years of experience here to help me be the best reviewer I can be.  I feel much more confident in going on site reviews now. Kudos to the council!

The training gave me confidence to speak up if I am concerned about a site and the lead and I may have different opinions.

I appreciate the effort of the team to construct a simulation of an accreditation site visit.  Even as an experienced accreditation site visitor, I still learn from the group discussion and Pearls shared by the facilitators. 

I want to thank the leaders of the accreditation council for an amazing training session this year at IMSH. It was great to work closely with the accreditation Team Leads simulating a site review. The team provided the group with difficult questions a well as supported opportunities to discuss responses and explore opportunities for learning! 

I found the training quite helpful.  It is easy, when reviewing the paperwork, to think that everything looks to be in order.  It was very clear when we did on "on-site" interview that there were major gaps in the program.  Our simulated participants were excellent in both their portrayal of the site leadership, as well as their feedback to each of the trainees.

The Accreditation News is a product of the Society for Simulation in Healthcare by the members of the Accreditation Council.

If you would like to contribute to Accreditation News or have an idea, please contact







New Fellowship Standards

SSH Accreditation will be adding a new optional area to the SSH Accreditation standards.  Coming soon, organizations will be able to become accredited in their Simulation Fellowship Programs.

Revised Confidentiality Agreements

In the upcoming months, SSH will be pushing out a revised version of the confidentiality agreements to all Council members, reviewers, and committee members.  This revision is part of an ongoing quality assurance process to better align the organization with best practice.  Once this document is disseminated, it will need to be reviewed and signed by all.  More information will be dispersed through your various committees and SSH.  If you have any questions, please contact Kristyn (

Accreditation Going Electronic

Over the past year, the SSH Accreditation has been working with the folks at WizeHive to integrate the paper application and review process into a fully personalized  Accreditation Management System (AMS) .  This platform will allow sites to apply for accreditation online and the reviewers will complete the reviews online through the platform.  In addition to saving some trees, the platform will enable the staff and reviewers to easily review the applications and make comments.  The reviewer team will even submit their review documents online.  For the staff, the AMS will help to automate actions, keep track of data, and enable more accurate reporting. The Wizehive AMS is being built and tested; there will be a few beta sites to fine-tune the software. More information will be forthcoming pertaining to training, rollout, and implementation. If you have any questions, please contact Kristyn  (

Picture1637002785469041351 Full Accreditation

Provisional Accreditation

Sim Center Directory

The Accreditation News is a product of the Society for Simulation in Healthcare by the members of the Accreditation Council.

If you would like to contribute to Accreditation News or have an idea, please contact

Program of the Quarter

Entries for 'Colin Rupp'


Peter M. Winter Institute for Simulation Education and Research (WISER)

When you think of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, several things may come to mind: its reputation as the Steel City, its numerous bridges, or maybe even those professional sports teams with an obvious affinity for yellow and black uniforms. There’s a WISER group, though, that want Pittsburgh to be seen as a leader in healthcare simulation education and training. Of course, I’m talking about the folks at the Peter M. Winter Institute for Simulation Education and Research, or as its commonly referred to, WISER.

Nestled in Oakland, the city’s academic and medical district, is WISER’s headquarters. The nearly 18,000 square foot healthcare simulation facility has come a long way since its early days. The Program was once concentrated in the University of Pittsburgh’s Anesthesia Department, but it was not destined to stay small. “A couple of our sort of Pioneers for WISER that included Dr. Peter Safar, who is the person who invented mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, and Dr. John Schaefer III, who was the founding Director of WISER, and a few other key people at the University of Pittsburgh at that time recognized there’s a great advantage to becoming a multidisciplinary simulation center,” says current Director, Dr. Paul Phrampus, MD.

That vision for the future of the Program started to come to fruition when the Anesthesia Department began collaborating with the University’s School of Nursing. Later, the Program expanded further to include pharmacy students, respiratory therapist students as well as students from a variety of other disciplines. Today it has grown even more thanks to its collaborative relationship with the 38-hospital UPMC Health System. “Over the last eight years, we’ve opened up eight satellite centers that reside within our hospitals,” says Phrampus. These facilities, he explains, are co-managed by WISER and the UPMC hospitals; with WISER providing the simulation expertise and the hospitals providing the subject matter expertise to co-develop the simulation scenarios. Phrampus feels as though this is an advantageous model for the patients served because the satellite centers conduct simulation trainings that are tailored to specific patient populations at the UPMC specialty hospitals like Magee-Womens Hospital and the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh. “It allows a tighter focus, and I think, a more efficient as well as effective implementation of simulation when we can allow a local hospital’s mission to intersect with the mission that we bring to the table to meet the needs of the patients at that particular facility,” says Phrampus. Over the last year, more than 100 in situ simulations have been conducted at UPMC hospitals.

WISER also has a very active relationship with one of Pittsburgh’s helicopter emergency medical service providers. “They do about 16,000 missions a year total and we play a very active role in their annual competencies and on-going assessments. We also helped them get started with a simulation room of their own for when they don’t need a big facility,” states Phrampus.

Another training initiative that Dr. Phrampus is proud to say WISER has been involved in focuses on UPMC’s response to highly infectious diseases like Ebola. The training course WISER developed and thoroughly evaluated for effectiveness has helped to set UPMC apart from other hospital systems in the state. “We’ve continued on with that [Program] and helped the state of Pennsylvania run a couple of assessments at a number of our hospitals in terms of how do we interact with local EMS, and doing very detailed assessments of that type of work, which lead us to become one of the first centers in Pennsylvania certified for highly infectious disease response,” Phrampus explains. He says it’s been exciting to be involved with an on-going quality improvement project with the Pennsylvania Department of Health.

When learners aren’t training to prevent an outbreak, you’ll find them honing their clinical skills in a variety of ways at WISER headquarters in Oakland. The center boasts the full gambit of simulation education tools and modalities. Learners have opportunities to train using partial task trainers, high-tech simulators, augmented reality, as well as cadaveric specimens. The leadership at the helm of WISER is highly experienced and credentialed in healthcare simulation; Director Paul Phrampus, Operations Director Tom Dongilli, and Director of Research John O’Donnell, are all SSH Simulation Fellows. WISER also employs several CHSOS-certified Simulation Operations Specialists who are the backbone of day to day activities at its centers. WISER has been an SSH Accredited Program in Assessment, Research, Teaching and Systems Integration since 2012, making it one the first Programs to achieve Accreditation in all four areas offered by SSH.

To learn more about becoming an SSH Accredited Simulation Program, please visit for details on eligibility requirements or contact

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Reviewer of the Month

Entries for 'Colin Rupp'


There are just not a lot of similarities between Detroit, Michigan and the island commonwealth of Dominica. Positioned on the US border with Canada, the average temperature of Detroit is 48.7 degrees. Dominica is a balmy 81 degrees and is nestled in the southeastern Caribbean Sea as part of the Windward Islands.  Home to the automobile industry and the birthplace of Motown, Detroit is a rugged, working class city home to 4.3 million people. Dominica, on the other hand, is home to lush, mountainous rainforests with active volcanos and a large variety of exotic birds. There are a less than 71,000 people that live on the island.

For Detroit native Lisa Paganotti, Dominica was an opportunity to begin her career in the field of healthcare simulation. And for an Upper Midwestern girl, it was an interesting and exciting beginning to a unique journey that has led her to where she is now, an acclaimed Simulation Manager for Ross University, an Accreditation Site Reviewer for the Society for Simulation in Healthcare, and now SSH’s Reviewer of the Quarter, among many other accomplishments.

Lisa grew up in Detroit and went to Northern Michigan University for her undergraduate degree in Health Education. “I loved the Upper Peninsula (of Michigan), and there were lots of activities to do in Marquette (home of NMU),” says Lisa. “And there was always a lot of snow!”  In 2008, after her Bachelor’s Degree, Lisa moved to Central Michigan University to complete her Masters to become a Physician Assistant.

Upon completion of her training, Lisa moved to Cadillac, Michigan to work at Munson Healthcare Cadillac Hospital in the Emergency Department. “I’ve always loved the ER, and the pace of it,” Lisa states, and has continued to work in Emergency Medicine throughout her career. Even at that time, though, she knew that teaching was her true calling. “Education is where my passion was, and I knew that I wanted to pursue a career that mixed my clinical knowledge and my love for teaching.” This is where Dominica comes into the picture…

“Ross University had an opening for a Simulation Coordinator in Dominica, and that had quite an allure to me.” Moving from northern Michigan to the Caribbean is quite an adjustment, from the pace of island life, to the simple fact that the island commonwealth did not recognize the role of the Physician Assistant as a healthcare profession. As a result, Lisa did not work clinically during her four years there. She focused solely on helping build Ross’s simulation program into one ready for full SSH Accreditation.

Lisa credits the preparation for accreditation as vital in shaping not only Ross University’s program but her understanding of simulation and how it could impact her work. “As we went through the process, you begin to realize your program’s strengths and weaknesses. It was so helpful for us to go through that, and learn how to do things better.” She also recognizes the accreditation process as being vital to in helping the program advocate for further resources to allow the program to grow even further.

Lisa’s time in Dominica also provided her the opportunity to meet her future husband, John, who went to medical school at Ross. Upon completion of the program, John and Lisa moved to Queens, New York where John began his residency in Internal Medicine. Lisa, meanwhile, continued to work for Ross, but was once again working in Emergency Medicine at South Nassau Hospital in Queens. After residency, it was time to move back home to Michigan, and the couple of have lived in Detroit ever since. Lisa and John were married in May of this past year.

During the accreditation site visit, Lisa was introduced to Tom Lemaster, now the incoming Chair of the Society’s Accreditation Council. She credits this meeting as the springboard toward her current involvement with the Society and the site review process. “After we were awarded accreditation, I kept in touch with Tom, and in fact, I was blessed to be able to present a couple of times with him at IMSH. It was really great to get to do that!”  Lisa completed her first assignment as an Accreditation Site Reviewer in 2016, and she really loves it.  “First of all, being a Site Reviewer really keeps you in constant contact with the (accreditation) standards. This has made me a better Simulation Manager at my own facility,” Lisa says. She also states that seeing how other simulation programs do things has helped her understand her program from a different point of view. “It has really challenged me to do things better at my place, and I think that is such a benefit of being a Site Reviewer.”

In addition to her work as a Site Reviewer, Lisa has also been an active member of the Accreditation Business Subcommittee, where she has helped launch the Society’s new online accreditation preparation courses. The focus of these courses is to help programs interested in becoming accredited learn about the various aspects of getting ready to meet the standards set forth by the Society. Lisa has further worked on the creation of the new Fellowship Standards that are currently being introduced. In 2017, Lisa also attained her Certified Healthcare Simulation Operations Specialist.

Over the past year, Lisa began working towards a PhD in Translational Health Sciences from George Washington University. This pursuit fits quite well with her work in simulation. “I think simulation is a translational science. We are taking knowledge and translating it into practice through applying knowledge in the simulated setting.”  She states that simulationists have known for a long time that simulation as a methodology has promoted learner knowledge acquisition and retention. But explains now “we are moving into a realm where that knowledge can be transferred into improving patient care and outcomes.”

Even though Lisa is an extremely busy woman, she still finds slivers of time to relax. “I think the thing that I love to do more than just about anything is snowboarding!” Lisa is an avid snowboarder, traveling at least once a year to places like Colorado or Utah to enjoy some fresh powder. In addition, Lisa has also competed in a number of triathlons since 2007, including both sprint and Olympic distance races.  For those of you who don’t know, this includes a 1500 meter swim, a 40 kilometer bike ride, and a 10 kilometer run. 

The Society for Simulation in Healthcare and the Accreditation Council would like to thank Lisa for her continuing work to further the success of accreditation, and congratulate her on the outstanding career accomplishments she has made to date, and finally her choice as Accreditation Reviewer of the Quarter!

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