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Objectives & Background

There has been an increasing use of massive haemorrhage protocols (MHP) within our trust. A number of clinical incidents were noted around roles/responsibilities when MHPs were run. Design failures (latent errors) were felt to contribute to these. Most MHPs are untested and are reliant on clear protocols, good communication and efficient team work. We proposed that running drills of our MHP in the ED setting would allow us to identify the latent errors and human factors that exist in our MHP then addressing these.


We proposed a 2 stage process where initially we tested functionality then identified and changed aspects of the system.


We ran 5 in-situ, real time MHP simulations involving the relevant members of the MDT in the ED. The 20 minute scenarios were followed by a structured human factors debrief. This allowed us to establish latent errors that were affecting the MHP. Results were then collated and codified from the sessions to allow planning of teaching for ED and non-ED staff.


Following this a card redesign was identified as being necessary. We used the principles of negative space, contrast, proximity and the pictorial superiority effect. A cluster randomised recall trial was then conducted at an F2 teaching session (66 participants), with participants blinded to the other version of the cards. A trauma video was shown (thoracotomy) and recall measured after this. Data analysed by an author blinded to both the study design and the data collection. GAfREC permission given by R+D.


HF/Ergonomics phase


Card redesign phase


18 people recalled all the important information – all used the new cards. 0 people in the old card group recalled all the information. 66 of the f2s (100%) preferred new design of card.


HF principles helped identify areas for improvement. Utilising design principles appears to have had significant impact on the effectiveness of the cards.

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