The Institute of Medicine’s (IOM) landmark 2001 report, Crossing the Quality Chasm: A New Health System for the 21st Century, identified six goals (safety, effectiveness, efficiency, timeliness, equity, patient-centeredness) and emphasized the need for “big, bold, transformational change…radical and sustainable.”

The widely circulated document did not influence specific or sustainable solutions to address preventable adverse events and improve patient outcomes. Today, it is estimated 400,000 lives are lost annually due to avoidable medical errors. According to the July 17, 2014 U. S. Senate Subcommittee report on “Primary Health and Aging,” medical errors are now the third leading cause of death in the U.S. after heart disease and cancer, and one in three hospital admissions result in harm to a patient.

In Paul Plsek’s 2014 book, “Accelerating Health Transformation with Lean and Innovation, in which he references the IOM groundbreaking report, he writes, “Unfortunately, innovation often faces both mental and structural barriers in healthcare. It requires the insight and courage to challenge the mental valleys of tradition, assumptions, roles, and ‘we’ve always done it this way thinking.’ ”

It was this reality that shaped the vision for the University of South Florida Center for Advanced Medical Learning & Simulation (CAMLS) during the seven years leading up to the opening of its new center in February 2012. Deborah Sutherland, PhD and USF CAMLS CEO, recognized the need for an innovative center where healthcare education and training could be reinvented and practiced in a realistic, clinical, learning environment.


As one of the world’s largest, free-standing centers fully dedicated to training healthcare professionals, the 90,000-square-foot, three-story facility provides a state-of-the-art, clinical environment with 60,000 square feet dedicated to surgical skills labs, operating suites, a virtual hospital and simulation center, and more than 25,000 square feet of dedicated education and conference space. Conveniently located in the heart of downtown Tampa, FL, it is open 7 days a week to accommodate the numerous demands that challenge today’s healthcare providers and researchers as well as its numerous international clients.

CAMLS is unmatched both in scale and customer service. Its academic-entrepreneurial business model gives it the flexibility to innovate, be nimble, work independently when advantageous, and attract clients for whom these factors are strategically important.

Three primary centers define CAMLS operations: its core “Education & Training Center,” the “Innovation Center,” and the “Global Consulting Services Center.”

CAMLS education and training programs are designed using simulated environments and evidence-based, instructional design methodology and best practice with performance metrics. Combined with state-of-the-art technology, learners are able to practice in a safe environment and ultimately demonstrate the skills proficiency required for safe clinical practice and improved patient outcomes.