Emergency medicine students win regional Sim Wars competition

The School of Medicine’s Sim Wars team (front row): Bradee Gabel, Alana Hoffman, Emily Hillman, M.D.; back row: Sean Mark, Brendan Kurtz, Alie Reinbold, Caroline Baghdiikian, Jesal Amin, Dylan Wyatt and Devan Bhatia. Not pictured is Maggie Kirwin.

Students from the UMKC School of Medicine returned from the Great Plains Regional Meeting of the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine with more than new insights into emergency medicine.

For the first time, UMKC also brought home the championship trophy from the annual Student Sim Wars competition. The event was held in Iowa City, Iowa.

“They were so well prepared,” said Emily Hillman, M.D., assistant professor, assistant program director and clerkship director for emergency medicine. “They represented the school so well. I was really happy for them.”

School of Medicine students take part in a Sim Wars competition.

The contest places four-person teams in an emergency patient scenario in which students must work together to assess a patient, intervene and manage the situation. Students work on a manikin simulator that serves as the patient, while also managing the patients’ family members, played by actors. Judges review and grade the students on their teamwork, communication and clinical decision-making skills.

Seven teams from six regional medical schools, including two from UMKC, competed in a bracketed format. The winning team of Alie Reinbold, Jesal Amin, Caroline Baghdikian, Sean Mark and Brendan Kurtz, defeated teams from the University of Iowa, Washington University and Southern Illinois University to capture the championship trophy. Maggie Kirwin, Alana Hofmann, Bradee Gabel, Dylan Wyatt and Deven Bhatia made up UMKC’s second competition team. Five more students, Joseph Bennett, Alex Willis, Timothy Chow, Kent Buxton and Danielle Graves, were part of the school’s Sim Wars teams that practiced and helped prepare the competition teams.

Students met with faculty and residents from the Department of Medicine twice a week for two months in the Youngblood Medical Skills Lab at the School of Medicine’s Clinical Training Facility to practice and train for competition using the SIMman simulator and other low-fidelity procedural models.

“They worked hard to prepare,” Hillman said. “Some of the students had been on the team for a number of years. It was very exciting to see them win.”