Simon Bettles

Simon Bettles

Director of Studies (HCPC Programmes) and Lead for Simulation Education
+44 (0)1483 689774
DK 04
Mon, Tue, Wed & Fri (8am - 6pm)



I worked for the NHS between 1996 - 2009 as an Operating Department Practitioner. In that time I've been responsible for a Day Surgery Unit, maternity provisions for the anaesthetic department and the manager for a busy Post Anaesthetic Care Unit.

Research interests

My research interests have two main areas, education and acute care. Specifically I'm interested in:

  • Simulation
  • Anaesthetics
  • Emergency and Trauma Care
  • Theatre processes
  • Patient Safety

Research collaborations

  • Surrey Crisis Resource Management (SCReaM) Project - in collaboration with The Royal Surrey County Hospital NHS Trust, Ashford and St Peter's Hospitals NHS Trust & Health Education Kent Surrey and Sussex (HEKSS).


Across Branch:

  • Physical Health Sciences
  • Clinical Practice inc. Simulation

Operating Department Practice DipHE:

  • Practice Module 2
  • Post Anaesthetic Care
  • Consolidated Practice
  • Peri-operative Anaesthetics
  • Peri-operative Surgical

Post-Reg Courses:

  • Applied Anaesthesia
  • Post Anaesthetic Care

Departmental duties

  • Lead for Simulation Education
  • Module Organiser
  • Leading the project to go 'paperless' in the school
  • Personal Tutor
  • Hospital Link Tutor
  • Lecturer

Courses I teach on


My publications


Bettles S (2011) Is simulation a useful teaching tool? Views of ODP students, Technic: The Journal of Operating Department Practice 2 (5) pp. 11-14 Tens Alps Creative
Halls A., Kanagasundaram M., Lau-Walker M., Diack H., Bettles S. (2019) Using in situ simulation to improve care of the acutely ill patient by enhancing interprofessional working: a qualitative proof of concept study in primary care in England, BMJ Open 2019 (9) e028572 pp. 1-9 BMJ Publishing Group


Acutely unwell patients in general practice are uncommon, but their management requires intervention from staff (clinical and non-clinical) working as a team. Despite the advantages of interprofessional education being well documented, there is little research evidence of this in the primary care setting. This study aimed to improve care of the acutely ill patient by enhancing interprofessional working, using in-situ simulation.


Mixed methods evaluation study. Phase 1 scoped education provision in GP practices within Health Education England Kent, Surrey and Sussex (HEEKSS) via questionnaire to 668 practices. In Phase 2 a simulation of cardiac arrest occurred in three HEEKSS practices; all staff participated in interviews.


Phase 1 showed the majority of practices ran sessions involving all staff, predominantly focusing on basic life support (BLS) (63 practices) and practice-specific areas such as managing difficult patients (28 practices). 61 said simulation was not used; 41 responded that it was, 37 specifying for BLS training. Qualitative thematic analysis identified four themes: 1) apprehension, anxiety, and (un)willing participation, 2) reflection on the simulation design, 3) experiences of the scenario and 4) training.


Practices made changes in their workplace, potentially benefitting the future management of acutely ill patients. The use of actors and involvement of clinical and non-clinical members of staff contributes to a fuller understanding of how in-situ simulation can benefit both workforce and patients.