• Director


John Schaefer

John J. Schaefer, III, MD

  • International expert in healthcare simulation design, education and research.
  • Internationally recognized educator in the field of airway management.
  • Professor, Department of Anesthesia and Perioperative Medicine, MUSC
  • B.A., Chemistry, University of West Virginia
  • B.S. in Chemical Engineering, West Virginia University
  • M.D., West Virginia University

Dr. John Schaefer is an international expert in healthcare simulation who is transforming the way healthcare clinicians are taught, and in the process, helping to reduce patient injury and improve medical outcomes.

Dr. Schaefer came to South Carolina from the University of Pittsburgh where he helped establish the first simulation training. He served as director of the center from 1997 to 2006 and directed the multi-partnered expansion of the center. As a SmartState Endowed Chair, he has led the effort to establish a statewide network of simulation centers, collaborating with diverse partners to open or improve centers at the Clemson University College of Nursing, Greenville Health System University Medical Center, Greenville Technical College, MUSC, Palmetto Health, the University of South Carolina College of Nursing, and Trident Technical College.

These SmartState Program-funded simulation centers now provide training for medical, nursing and allied health students, as well as advanced continuing education to hospital employees and physicians. They allow healthcare providers to practice their skills in a controlled, risk-free environment, rather than in an actual patient setting. This innovative training method results in better healthcare outcomes and increased patient safety.

Additionally, Dr. Schaefer is developing training, equipment, and software programs that are making South Carolina a leader in the medical simulation field. He co-founded a start-up company called SimTunes in 2008 to create and commercialize simulation educational technology.


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