The Road to Quality Simulation: Endorsement by INACSL

Laura Gonzalez
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The International Nursing Association for Clinical Simulation and Learning (INACSL) advances innovative clinical simulation in nursing education to improve patient outcomes. Their Healthcare Simulation Standards Endorsement™ program promotes high-quality simulation practices globally, recognizing disparities in resources. Read the article to learn more


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The International Nursing Association for Clinical Simulation and Learning (INACSL) is committed to advancing the research and implementation of innovative clinical simulation methodologies and technologies in nursing education. INACSL aims to enhance patient outcomes through high-quality simulations that improve education, research, and practice. As a leader in promoting global excellence in simulation-based learning, INACSL envisions leading the global community in transforming practice to improve patient safety and healthcare simulation excellence. A recent initiative by INACSL to support quality simulation is the Healthcare Simulation Standards Endorsement™ program.

INACSL established the Healthcare Simulation Standards Endorsement™ program to promote excellence in simulation-based education worldwide. This initiative recognizes the disparities in resources among different simulation programs and aims to showcase high-quality practices regardless of an institution’s size or resources. In 2021, INACSL formed a workgroup with a diverse community of practice to define quality simulation, identifying the cornerstones of quality simulation. Prebriefing: Preparation and Briefing, Facilitation, Professional Integrity, and Debriefing—as the foundation of the endorsement program. This program emphasizes inclusivity and equitable recognition of simulation excellence.

The endorsement initiative supports quality simulation practices across all levels of healthcare education, from well-resourced, large-scale simulation centers to smaller, underfunded programs. Since the standards apply to all simulations, endorsement is available globally to all healthcare simulation programs. By focusing on essential standards for effective simulation, the program seeks to level the playing field and motivate all institutions to pursue excellence in simulation.

The inclusive nature of this program underlines that high-quality simulation relies on adhering to best practices and standards that foster meaningful learning experiences. It encourages educational programs to concentrate on core elements, ensuring students access top-tier simulation education that prepares them for healthcare realities. To date, there are over 36 programs endorsed globally.

The endorsement benefits learners by learning in a simulation program that applies the standards to each simulation experience. Faculty members gain from a structured framework that supports effective education delivery and professional development. The broader simulation community benefits from a commitment to excellence and continuous improvement, establishing a quality benchmark and fostering the adoption of evidence-based practices and innovative technologies.

Additionally, the endorsement promotes interprofessional collaboration by recognizing various simulation-based experiences such as high fidelity, simulated participants, and virtual simulation, which are crucial for enhancing teamwork and communication skills, thereby improving patient safety and care quality. Overall, the INACSL Healthcare Simulation Standards Endorsement program is pivotal in advancing simulation-based education to better prepare today’s healthcare professionals to meet patient care demands and contribute to better healthcare outcomes and safety.

Endorsement by the International Nursing Association for Clinical Simulation and Learning (INACSL) is distinct from accreditation and serves fundamentally different purposes. While endorsement and accreditation seek to uphold high standards, endorsement specifically focuses on recognizing and promoting excellence in simulation-based educational practices. It does not confer a formal status or accreditation but rather highlights exemplary simulation methodologies that meet established core standards. In contrast, accreditation is a comprehensive evaluation process that assesses an institution or program against a set of rigorous criteria to ensure compliance with educational and operational standards. Accreditation typically results in a formal designation that signifies the institution or program meets or exceeds the standards necessary for professional practice. To summarize, endorsement celebrates outstanding educational practices in simulation pedagogy and best practices. INACSL is committed to supporting any program seeking additional information about Endorsement. Additional information can be found at


Laura Gonzalez

Laura Gonzalez

President of International Association for Clinical Simulation and Learning (INACSL) View all Posts
Margaret Verkuyl

Margaret Verkuyl

NP PHC MN CCSNE Nursing Professor at Centennial College View all Posts

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