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VA Palo Alto Health Care System


Simulation Center

The VA Palo Alto Health Care System Department of Anesthesia has been and continues to be a world leader in the field of medical simulation. The simulation program has pioneered the use of mannequin-based, fully interactive simulators in anesthesiology, intensive care, emergency medicine and other clinical settings.

Under the direction of David M. Gaba, M.D, professor of anesthesia, the group has led simulations for research and training since 1986, running a dedicated simulation center since 1995. Its current facility, which occupies 2400 square feet, contains a replica operating room, a replica ED/ICU/ward, and four patient simulators. Read recent news story >>

Staff in the simulation operating room operating on a mannequin

In addition to training physicians and nurses at both the VA Palo Alto and Stanford for more than 20 years, the VA Palo Alto simulation group has trained individuals from around the world in the field of medical simulation. Recently the VAH launched the Simulation Learning Education and Research Network (SimLEARN), which is the VHA's program for simulation in healthcare training. SimLEARN's goal is to establish a national simulation training and education program for simulation in healthcare. The VA Palo Alto has been designated a SimLEARN satellite office.

In the near future, VA Palo Alto Health Care System will open the 15,000 sq. ft., two-story Education Center that will include a large auditorium, multi-purpose breakout rooms, a computer training lab, and education offices, and will begin construction on a new and much larger simulation center. This new center will offer state-of-the-art equipment and many more opportunities for simulation-based training and education research.

Simulation Team


Key Simulation Personnel at VA Palo Alto: