Virtual Patient Care Resources

Welcome to McMaster University's Virtual Patient Care Curriculum

Dear Medical Education Colleagues,

Undergraduate and postgraduate programs across Canada are interested in learning more about our Virtual Patient Care Simulation (VPCS) sessions at McMaster. We are happy to share materials for you to use at your school. These sessions can easily be adapted for variety of health professions programs. At McMaster, these sessions are delivered virtually through a videoconferencing platform; we are using WebEx.

The Virtual Patient Care Simulation (VPCS) sessions in McMaster’s Virtual Longitudinal Clerkship (VLC) includes two parts:


The Active Learning Large Group Session (AL-LGS) runs virtually (via WebEx) to all the clerkship students prior to their VPCS sessions. The AL-LGS, “Virtual Patient Care in the Ambulatory Setting” is presented by two faculty, with expertise in virtual patient care, in General Internal Medicine and Family Medicine specialties, and a resident, to provide the learner perspective. The power point presentation is attached. The materials provided to students prior to the session includes:

  • Virtual Care Playbook from the CFPC/RCPS/CMA - See below
  • CFPC Supervision of FM Learners providing virtual care - See below
  1. VPCS sessions

Virtual Patient Care Simulation (VPCS) small group sessions provide learners with communications skills practice. A Standardized Patient Custom Case entitled “Coronavirus at Home”, has been developed by the Standardized Patient Trainers at the Centre for Simulation Based Medicine (CSBL) in the Faculty of Health Sciences at McMaster. Each student has an opportunity to interview the simulated patient, virtually, while the other students and the faculty facilitator observe. The VPCS Interview Observation Guideline assists facilitators and students in providing the interviewer feedback after each session.

VPSC Sessions details are as follows:

  • 5-6 students, a faculty facilitator and a standardized patient (SP).
  • Students will schedule themselves (or be scheduled into) a pre-booked video-conferenced session (i.e. Webex, Zoom, or Google Meets). 
  • All students, SPs and facilitators link in from home on smartphone, tablet, or computer with video capability. Keep camera on and sound on mute (unless speaking).
  • Sessions will be 120 minutes in length allowing time for:
    • Introductions, determine order of students and timing – 10 min.
    • Each student completes a simulated virtual interview (e.g. 10 min. interview with SP and 5- 7 min. feedback) – 90-100 min.
    • Session Feedback, Reflection & Intention – 10-20 min
      • Give feedback on the session, standardized patient/scenario, etc.
      • Students are encouraged to reflect on how they will apply what was practiced in actual virtual patient interactions in the future? Consider elements such as technology, relationship building, consent, documentation.
      • Complete the evaluations.
  • Scenarios: 6 primary care “10 min visit” cases using the same SP (the adult):
    • Adult x 2
    • Elderly family member issue (adult SP describing issue of their parent) x 2
    • Infant issue (adult SP as parent describing issue of their child) x 2.

Thank you for the opportunity to share our new curriculum with you. Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions.

Virtual Longitudinal Clerkship Planners M.G. DeGroote School of Medicine McMaster University

NEW Faculty Development e-Module

Effective Integration of Learners in Virtual Care: A Faculty Primer

created by Dr. Keyna Bracken, Director, Longitudinal Clerkship Experiences and Undergraduate Family Medicine, McMaster University

Go to the module