Simulation is an effective and safe way to ensure EMS providers are prepared for the challenges of street medicine. In this supplement, sponsored by Laerdal, simulation experts provide best practices for integrating simulation into EMS training, while several profiles of leading EMS training providers offer a look at successful simulation in action.
The Future of EMS Is Here
EMS holds patients’ fates in the palm of its hand. One misplaced needle, inappropriately administered drug, incorrect treatment sequence or failed airway control can harm or even kill a patient. Simulation allows us to train on all aspects of emergency care and perfect our skills in a controlled, safe environment—and will also keep us out of court.
Simulation as a means of training healthcare providers is rapidly becoming the standard in EMS education. It has been integrated into entry-level training programs for students as well as continuing education programs for practicing professionals.
But whether you’re just getting started with simulation or running a seasoned program and want to take it to the next level, there are some basic principles you must consider to ensure the program’s success.
Debriefing is the process by which students interactively review their performance after completing a simulation exercise. The procedure should be guided by session objectives, course material, and student comments and questions. Instructors should serve as a resource and interject goals and outcomes of the scenario in a positive manner.
Hands-on training and education are very important aspects of becoming better prepared for both natural disasters and terrorist events. Simulation in particular provides a mechanism in which future and current first responders can train on low-frequency, high-consequence responses.
Simulation is probably one of the most beneficial forms of training because it:
1. Provides a safe, forgiving environment for responders to acquire new skills;
2. Focuses on the trainee rather than the patient or incident;
An EMS crew arrives for the start of their shift and begins a required vehicle inventory. Suddenly, their radio screams to life: “Team Red, respond to an unconscious person.”
Located in Raleigh, N.C., WakeMed Health & Hospitals’ Center for Innovative Learning is one of the leading providers of simulation-based education. It offers more than 50 courses, as well as programs that focus on utilization of simulation technology, effective debriefing, simulation operations and facilitation of human patient simulators.
You arrive on a crowded scene to find an elderly patient on the floor with CPR in progress. Your pulse is pounding. All eyes are on you and your partner. You begin to assess and treat the patient, trying to remember everything you were taught in the classroom. Your hands shake as you reach to open the ALS bag.