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APIH Public Health Training Simulation
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APIH Public Health Training Simulation


DDA custom designed and developed the APIH public health training simulation in 2018. DDA underwent a 1-year vetting process before being selected to develop this eLearning platform by the four academic organizations that form the Academic Partnership to Improve Health: AACN, AAMC, APTR, and ASPPH. These organizations together represented the interests of hundreds of accredited U.S. and Canadian medical and public health schools, along with hundreds of thousands of medical students, residents, physicians, and faculty members. Working with the US. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), APIH came to DDA with the goal to develop a new interactive eLearning platform that would advance professional education and improvement in public health and health care workforces, especially concerning the interprofessional work that is central to a successful public health response. The new public health training simulation needed to show how primary care physicians, nurses, and public health officials can work together using best practices to identify threats to public health, determine the source, defend populations from health threats, and learn from their experience in addressing public health challenges to improve over time.


APIH wrote all scripts coordinated with references and DDA used these as the basis for the course content. DDA worked with APIH to plan set designs for all the videos, which were to be shot in its own studios, with props and stage designs that perfectly situated the characters in realistic clinical and public health offices. DDA and APIH also planned action stops consisting of question and answer segments and information reveals to be placed intermittently between the many videos that make up the core course content. A note-taking feature would tie user notes to specific course videos to provide better context upon later review. Thanks to DDA’s Actors’ Network, DDA was able to cast a highly diverse cast for the over half dozen on-screen roles in the videos, ensuring that anyone viewing the platforms would be able to connect with the videos and personally relate to the characters.


DDA custom designed and developed the multimedia eLearning platform to make for a beautiful aesthetic and seamless, interactive user experience. DDA shot all videos in its own professional studios using its own set designs, producing over an hour of footage that was then edited into dozens of videos that comprise the core content of this public health training simulation. Multiple angles including moving shots were used to maximize visual interest and learner engagement, thus helping to ensure the best learning outcomes for all users. The gated navigation system ensures that learners progress through the entirety of the course so they get the most from the comprehensive training simulation.

Interspersed throughout the course content are both references and additional supplemental online resources that can help deepen understanding for those users that are curious and want to learn more about specific topics. Users can also save specific references and resources to their library for faster reference later, in addition to notes demarcated for the position in the course in which they are taken. Users start their training by taking an initial assessment of their knowledge of the public health topics covered in the simulation, and complete the course by taking another test on the same topics at the end. Once they achieve a passing score, they are awarded a personalized certificate of completion. The pre- and post-course assessments help administrators compare the growth in knowledge of users from before to after completing the course, helping to gain insight in the success of the training simulation. A post-assessment module evaluation allows users to submit their feedback on their learning experience for even deeper insight into how the public health training simulation is received.


The APIH Public Health Training Simulation has been very well received by the organizations responsible for bringing the project to DDA, as well as with individual users, with module evaluations consistently reporting positive experiences with the virtual medical simulation. As the importance of public health topics has become more important than ever, the APIH Public Health Training Simulation is a powerful example of what virtual medical simulations can do to help medical and public health professionals understand how to work together for the greater good in ever more effective ways.

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