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The Virtual Patient 

virtual patientThis document presents a research and development plan, or “Roadmap,” designed to improve the integration of learning technologies into simulation-based trainers in medicine. The goal is to form an effective bridge between textbook and patient, while reducing errors associated with the acquisition of patient care skills. This research road map fills a critical need to raise awareness of research challenges and R&D priorities for next-generation medical simulators.

Stakeholders need to have a coordinated understanding of the relevant research results, computational tools, on-going programs and projects across research disciplines, industry efforts, and government funding organizations. This Roadmap will hopefully encourage dialog and partnerships to leverage gains from one field to other fields. The Roadmap will provide the non-medical learning technologies community background in the past, current and future of patient simulation. It will also serve as a central resource on medical simulation for the community of practitioners, educators and technology developers.

The Roadmap incorporates the results of a workshop held June 27-28, 2005 at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, attended by 50 participants, representing the fields of allied health and medical education and training, information technology, and the learning sciences. The workshop identified three key focus research topics and tasks, milestones, and performance measures for each of the research topics. These were further refined via digital collaborative tools.

This Roapmap, created by many of the workshop participants,  is truly the product of the community of clinicians, technologists, and learning scientists who participated in the workshop.