The Center for Simulation and Integrated Healthcare Education (CSIHE) at Austen BioInnovation Institute in Akron (ABIA) is one of the largest, most comprehensive medical simulation centers in the country.  CSHIE is dedicated to providing simulation-based education for individuals and healthcare teams with the goals of improving provider care and enhancing patient outcomes.

The center is guided by a highly experienced team that develops and implements simulation curricula and interprofessional training.  CSHIE can customize its space and technological tools to create simulation-based instruction to suit any need.

Simulation Center Overview
In May 2012, the Austen BioInnovation Institute in Akron (ABIA) opened its new headquarters in a historic downtown building that underwent a $13.3 million renovation to advance ABIA’s transformative mission. At the heart of the building is ABIA’s 30,000 square foot Center for Simulation and Integrated Healthcare Education (CSIHE). In this advanced facility, CSIHE offers a wide range of programs to numerous audiences. These include procedural training, patient safety training, team communications, patient hand offs, disaster preparedness, device testing and integrated training exercises involving EMS, healthcare and other professionals.

We created this distinctive cooperative environment to foster improvements in:

  • Healthcare quality
  • Provider performance
  • Patient safety
  • Communication skills

The sights and sounds of a real hospital or clinic are part of the learning environment created by working monitors and medical equipment. Patient actors or high-fidelity robotic patient simulators can portray any number of health problems.  Reality is projected so powerfully and completely that healthcare trainees react as they would under real-life circumstances. Even power outages and other disasters can be duplicated for teaching purposes.

CSIHE provides a place for those in healthcare to hone existing skills and develop new competencies safely in a supportive, yet challenging environment. Simulation training gives them the opportunity to learn and grow from mistakes — without the dire consequences a real-world setting would impose. They can be tested by trainers on general cognitive and motor skills, knowledge about a subject or procedure, communication and delegation skills, as well as overall effectiveness.


BioSkills Laboratory
CSIHE’s nine-bay BioSkills Lab offers medical professionals the opportunity to perfect surgical techniques. The lab can be set up for general or minimally invasive surgery and can accommodate an instructor and multiple students. An integrated and advanced AV system allows to be used to teach sound surgical techniques. The lab also provides a vital means for the evaluation of medical devices by manufacturers, researchers and healthcare providers.

Mock Hospital
The main floor of the CSIHE facility features a mock hospital with fully configurable bays and stations:

  • Triage
  • Nursing
  • Medical
  • Surgical
  • ICU
  • Emergency
  • Operating Rooms

The space can be divided into discrete simulation rooms or used to offer training across the span of a patient’s stay in the hospital. The stations surround an elevated central control room from which instructors may easily monitor without distracting or influencing the teams’ work. The mock hospital also includes a fully functional decontamination suite used for enacting responses to chemical, radiological, nuclear and explosive hazards.

Standardized Patient Rooms
The CSIHE facility includes eight outpatient clinic rooms for practice of communication and examination skills. Patients are well-trained actors who can present with physical or mental health conditions. These examination rooms have functional equipment, providing the ideal setting in which to practice and improve interview, exam, assessment and clinical reasoning skills. Each of these rooms has a faculty observation area and is wired for video and sound recordings, which are used in evaluation and debriefing.

Mobile Simulation Training
CSIHE’s Mobile Simulation Unit, the only mobile training unit in Northeast Ohio, helps carry the center’s primary mission — high-quality, immersive, interprofessional healthcare training –- to regional healthcare facilities and remote campuses. The mobile unit, which has ambulance and E.R. equipment in addition to its robotic patients, can be a powerful teaching tool for practitioners in outlying communities. With the unit, we can also provide in-situ training with a focus on patient safety and risk mitigation strategies.