SIM Scenario Exchange

End-of-life: Home to Hospital

Contributed on December 4, 2015, last updated June 28, 2022.



Judy Bornais, RN, BA, BScN, MSc, CDE, University of Windsor
Debbie Rickeard, RN, BA, BScN, MSN, CCRN, CNE, University of Windsor

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Patient with stage four mesothelioma lung cancer that is being cared for in the home environment. Designed to challenge the year 4 student with doing an assessment and critically thinking next steps when caring for a patient who becomes hemodynamically unstable. Communication is paramount, with physician, EMS, and family. The patient is sent to the hospital and arrives obtunded. He goes into cardiac arrest, resuscitation is attempted but unsuccessful. The year 4 students are faced with a grieving family and preparing the body after death.

Learning Objectives:

Do What

With What

For What

1. Analyze

The assessment findings of the terminally ill patient

To develop an appropriate plan of care.

2. Communicate

Using therapeutic techniques, with the terminally ill patient and their family

To reduce anxiety surrounding the diagnosis and support the grieving process.

3. Collaborate

On a plan of care with members of the interdisciplinary team, for a terminally ill patient experiencing a change in health status

To develop a safe and appropriate plan of care.

4. Demonstrate

Safe practices when administering medication to the terminally ill patient experiencing a change in health status

To minimize the risk for error and attempt to stabilize their condition.

5. Discuss

Personal feelings regarding end-of- life care

To reflect on own actions and responses when providing care for the terminally-ill patient.

Simulation Modality:

Manikin-based, Role-playing, Standardized/simulated patients or real patients


Bornais J, Rickeard D. End-of-life: Home to Hospital. Simulation resource published by Simulation Canada; 2015. Available from

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Target Learners






Undergraduate / post-secondary

Fields / Disciplines:

Emergency / trauma
Palliative & end-of-life care

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