This article discusses the benefits and challenges of training and engaging drama students as simulated patients (SPs) in health education, as evidenced through the Acting 4 Health project at the University of the Sunshine Coast (USC). The project found that engaging drama students as SPs was effective in developing the skill level of drama students and offered unexpected opportunities for actor training. At the same time, the use of drama students as SPs was found to support the educational needs of nursing and midwifery students, thus creating a complementary curriculum for education in drama and health. Challenges of the project related to resources for the training of drama students and nursing tutors, and the emotional and physical challenges for drama students. The article concludes with proposed solutions to the challenges of the project and suggestions for further research.
Applied Theatre Research / Vol. 4, No. 3, pp.255-268