COACHES: Children's of Alabama Community Healthcare Education Simulation


The care of an acutely ill child in a community hospital setting is one of the most stressful moments for any community healthcare provider. Healthcare providers in these settings receive less frequent training in the care of critically ill pediatric patients and may not be familiar with available resources or supplies.

To address this, our team has created a program to help train your entire healthcare team in the care of pediatric patients in your hospital. The Children’s of Alabama Community Healthcare Education Simulation (COACHES) program is a multidisciplinary team of pediatric critical care trained physicians and nurses who are conducting simulation training interventions in community hospitals, with the ultimate goal of improving pediatric patient outcomes. We believe this program will improve the care provided to pediatric patients and improve outcomes for acutely ill and injured children.

Program Description

A pediatric simulation outreach team – consisting of a pediatric critical care physician, a nurse educator, and a research nurse– will travel to community hospitals throughout Alabama. Each hospital will be contacted to schedule day-long visits in either their emergency department or pediatric inpatient floor which will include assessments related to pediatric readiness. Immediately following completion of the readiness assessment, morning and afternoon simulation sessions will be conducted with different team members to evaluate community hospital health care team performance when caring for critically ill pediatric patients. Two sessions with different teams will be conducted to ensure a more comprehensive representation of each hospital’s performance. For each scenario, a medical management checklist consisting of national care guidelines or best practice metrics will be used to evaluate hospital health care team performance. Team communication will be evaluated using a validated tool. Each simulation scenario will be followed immediately by a debriefing with team members. The debriefing will be focused on positive and negative aspects of medical management, communication, and barriers to patient care including suggestions to overcome them. Training in pediatric care skills, such as intravenous line placement, will be provided following simulation scenarios. A report including the results of the survey as well as the overall performance score for both sessions will be presented to each hospital. The report will also detail how well each hospital performed compared to Children’s of Alabama (performance standard). Any latent safety issues will also be identified with a proposed plan for improvement.

Our Mission

To utilize simulation in a structured environment to promote excellence in pediatric clinical care, patient safety and education for all healthcare practitioners and care teams throughout the state of Alabama.

Our Vision

A mobile multidisciplinary simulation institution of excellence to provide high-fidelity simulation to community providers to promote education, research and the delivery of safe, innovative healthcare for children.

Contact Information

Need other information? You can reach us at 201-638-5811 or