Multidisciplinary, In Situ Simulation Improves Experienced Caregiver Confidence With High-Risk Pediatric Emergencies


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Abstract

ObjectivesEmergency department (ED) caregivers have reported feeling uncomfortable performing emergency pediatric procedures, likely because of either a lack of training or infrequent exposure to these events. To address these gaps, ongoing education for experienced ED caregivers must aim to improve caregiver confidence with high-risk, low-volume pediatric emergency care. This study used multidisciplinary, in situ simulations to facilitate improved caregiver confidence when treating pediatric emergencies in an ED setting.MethodsTwo-hour pediatric code blue simulations were held in 7 EDs throughout the Seattle, Washington, metropolitan area. Questionnaire data were collected from 353 simulation participants (60% nurses, 19.5% ED technicians, 14% ED physicians; median team size = 5) via pre simulation and post simulation surveys assessing confidence and understanding regarding interventions/treatments, standard protocols, culture of safety behavior, and team members' roles/responsibilities. Paired t tests were used to analyze changes in self-reported confidence.ResultsConfidence improved across all questions (37%–57% of participants reported good/complete confidence pre simulation, improving 94%–98% post simulation; P < 0.00001 for all). Participants cited learning equipment location/use (37%), hands-on practice (32%), and discussion (22%) as the most helpful aspects of the simulations. Identified changes to practice made post simulation included more effective communication (18%) and utilization of a pediatric emergency drug sheet (13%).ConclusionsMultidisciplinary, in situ simulation improves experienced ED caregivers' confidence with pediatric emergencies in an ED setting. These findings suggest that investment in simulation-based education may improve clinical care and quality and safety improvement plans for the treatment of pediatric emergencies in general EDs.

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