Case 4 – Healthcare: Interprofessional Communication Challenges


This simulation has two scenarios from which to choose, each with different levels of difficulty. All scenarios involve ethical and procedural challenges that require communication among a Registered Practical Nurse (RPN), Personal Support Worker (PSW) and a Recreational Therapist (RT). The focus is on problem-solving, conflict resolution and ethical decision-making in a patient-care team. Download the full facilitator’s copy of Case 4.

Notes to Facilitator

There can be three to six participants, depending on class size with at least one participant assuming each role. To prepare participants for the role we suggest starting with a warm-up exercise in which each participant introduces themselves in role (see Warm-up Exercise). Note that scenario 1 has two charts for two different people with the same name.

What are your learning objectives for this exercise or course? What prompts could you add to extend or expand the simulation in that direction? What additional resources or assignments might you add? 


Prior to the simulation, ensure participant contact information (e.g, emails, selected chat platform, or phone numbers for texting) is easily accessible on a list that includes their assigned roles (Download Sample Chart: Health Role Assignment – Mrs. Jones). During the simulation, you will need to contact certain characters, so advance planning is helpful. If online, you can copy and paste prompts using email or a chat function. If delivering the simulation in person, you could continue to use email or chat for hybrid delivery, or use cue cards or slips of paper to communicate. Not all characters will receive correspondence from the facilitator(s) in role; those with privacy concerns can be assigned non-contact roles. Be aware of your organization’s PIPA position. Discuss privacy issues in advance and modify accordingly.


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Exploring Interpersonal Dynamics Through Role Play Copyright © by Catherine Jenkins, Kevin Hobbs, & Joe Norris is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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