King’s College London’s Faculty of Nursing & Midwifery has launched an exciting new teaching and training tool to help students and newly qualified nurses practise their clinical decision making and prioritisation skills. The Priorities Game is a board game that simulates a typical hospital ward and player must assume roles and manage the ward for a shift. It creates a realistic and safe space to practice essential nursing skills in an effective 'learning circle'.

The Priorities Game has been developed by Clinical Teachers Lucy Tyler and Rhiannon Eley, who wanted to develop an effective group learning resource to help students practice key skills such as prioritisation, clinical reasoning and decision making. It was created in collaboration with educational games specialists Focus Games.

We have found that students often lack the confidence and opportunity to practice and reflect upon skills like prioritisation and decision making in a busy clinical environment but are expected to qualify with these skills. We hope that through learning about and developing these skills in a fun way, The Priorities Game will assist nurses of the future to be safe and effective practitioners.”

Rhiannon Eley & Lucy Tyler.

Rhiannon & Lucy launched The Priorities Game earlier this month at a King’s College event, where students and staff got together to play the game.

It is just like real life; you think you’re ready to do a task and finish, and then something else comes up and you have to decide what is more important, what do I need to do first.” Third Year Student Nurse

“Team work was key to completing the game which I liked as well as the unpredictability of the action cards - that was fun and reflected real practice." Third Year Student Nurse

The Priorities Game gives players the opportunity to consider how care delivery and nursing tasks should be prioritised in a busy ward, and to see the outcomes of their decisions in a safe space.

Up to 8 players take on roles as members of ward staff and must achieve a target number of admissions and discharges before their “shift” ends and at the same time they must manage ongoing patient care. As the shift progresses they are presented with tasks and challenges. Players must work together to make decisions, prioritise issues and use their role-specific skills and authority to complete patient care tasks.

The Priorities Game is now available to pre-order and is a suitable learning resource for student and qualified nurses. Nurses involved in facilitation of learning will find it a particularly useful tool for student training, and for developing the skills of newly qualified nurses in practice. The Priorities Game supports nurse education modules covering:

  • Admission/discharge process
  • Decision-making and prioritisation
  • Communication and teamwork
  • Leadership skills

If you’d like to learn more about the game and how to get a copy for your organisation, click here.

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