A simulated patient is a person who has been trained to respond in the simulations as a real patient. This brings a degree of realism to the simulation events as healthcare professional are dealing with a live person instead of a manikin.
SPs appear to offer a more realistic experience for learners than ‘plastic’ manikins and might be expected to engender interactions that approximate real clinical practice more closely. (Coffey 2015)
Coffey F et al 2015 Simulated patients versus manikins in acute‐care scenarios The Clinical Teacher Volume 13, Issue 4