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February 20, 2023

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. – Tim Laughlin, Senior Simulation Specialist at Johnson County Community College (JCCC), was recently awarded the Simulation Operations and Technology Section (SOTS) Innovation Award by the International Meeting on Simulation in Healthcare (IMSH). IMSH is the world’s largest scientific conference that explores the latest innovations and best practices in healthcare simulation learning, research and scholarship.

Laughlin, one of the key support employees of JCCC’s Zamierowski Family Center for Healthcare Simulation, is being recognized for his efforts to assist learning in the Center during COVID-19.

At the start of the pandemic, Laughlin was tasked with converting live, in-person simulation teaching into a virtual learning experience so JCCC’s Nursing students could study remotely. His technology solutions allowed teaching and learning to adjust and continue without impact to students.

In addition to the SOTS Innovation Award, Laughlin was recently designated as a Certified Healthcare Simulation Operations Specialist-Advanced (CHSOS-A) by the Society for Simulation. This certification recognizes those who have advanced skills in the operations specialist role, have demonstrated leadership and have influenced the healthcare simulation community beyond their own institution. Laughlin is one of only 34 people with this designation across seven countries.

Additionally, Laughlin was recognized in 2021 by the Gartner Eye on Innovation Awards for Higher Education, where his case study on JCCC’s virtual healthcare simulation experience was a top four finalist in the international competition. 

“My goal is to increase students’ critical thinking skills during their simulation clinical days, which helps prepare them for graduation and ultimately places the best registered nurses into our community,” says Laughlin. “It makes me extremely proud to see Johnson County Community College next to some of the best in the healthcare industry and world.”

During the past five years, more than 3,220 students have graduated from various health occupation programs at JCCC with the skills they need to provide modern healthcare services.

Students practice in JCCC’s Zamierowski Family Center for Healthcare Simulation, an environment that allows them to learn how it feels to provide care using state-of-the-art simulated patients. The 2,000-square-foot Center virtually mimics what healthcare personnel experience in a hospital setting and includes the same technology as an acute care facility. JCCC faculty can control the simulator to respond physiologically to students’ actions, and they can verbally respond to the students as the patient’s voice. The Center provides safe, hands-on training to students that allows them to review their actions and evaluate their skills during activity debriefs.