The development of service users in the provision of verbal feedback to student nurses in a clinical simulation environment
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The School of Nursing and Midwifery at Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen, has a sustained history of working in partnership with service users in their role as patient volunteers. The patient volunteers make a pivotal contribution towards the delivery of clinical skills as “real” patients. They work within a scenario context, overseen and facilitated by academic staff. Evaluations have identified that the patient volunteers find this experience rewarding, worthwhile and a way of contributing to the education of student nurses. Whilst this is already a successful element of the student's learning, staff were cognisant of the need to develop this aspect further. A case study approach was adopted to review the experience of the patient volunteers in their provision of feedback to students. In accordance with the evidence base, it was proposed to enhance the volunteer patient's role in providing verbal face to face feedback to students. An educational package for the patient volunteers was developed and a current simulation event within the curriculum was identified that would allow the volunteers to practice giving feedback. This was then evaluated and following ethical approval, a series of focus groups were undertaken with the patient volunteers. The data collected identified the strengths and limitations of this experience and as a result of this an implementation plan was identified aimed at enhancing the patient volunteer's and the student's experience.