SIMmersion has developed a series of virtual role-play clients with substance abuse disorders to help Peer Support Specialists build needed skills.
As shown in the Figure provided by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, the number of drug overdose death increases each year, with the 70,630 in 2019 jumping to 91,799 in 2020.
Peer Support Specialists are emerging as important members of the opioid use disorder treatment teams. These specialists have lived experience of recovery and are able to provide support to others experiencing similar challenges. However, they come from a variety of backgrounds and are not clinically trained as counselors.
To help these specialists develop the required skills, practice working with clients is needed as pictured below. Virtual role-players provide the opportunity to get realistic practice and on-going feedback.
SIMmersion has created three virtual role-players, each at different stages of recovery.
- Jake Finney is not very interested in changing his use, so the specialists can practice helping him find his own reasons to stop using.
- Harold Melton wants special favors, so specialists can learn and practice applying the boundaries.
- Paloma Alvarado has experienced recent setbacks, so the specialist can practice providing continuing support.
While the specialists are learning, mistakes made with real people can be serious, while mistakes with virtual role-players only lead to supportive feedback that helps learners understand why some statements were misguided. The role-players are different during each practice and have realistic emotions, making them seem real to the specialists and making each experience a unique new one.
To watch the video about Jake and gain an understand of how the role-plays work click here.
To learn more about the role-play training systems, go to https://peersupport.simmersion.com/.
For a free trial click here.