Background: Our ambulatory emergency response team (ERT) is comprised of registered nurses, medical assistants, respiratory care practitioners, and non-clinical managers. ERT members have varying degrees of previous clinical experience and come from different specialties within our ambulatory center. Before the start of our project, there was no formalized training for current or new ERT members. ERT members expressed concerns about preparedness in responding to an emergency situation.
Purpose/description of project: The purpose of the project was to create an effective, sustainable education plan to increase preparedness and address the educational needs of our multidisciplinary ERT. A multimodal training and continuing education plan was designed to address the training gap and the different experience levels of ERT members. The education plan consists of instructor-led orientation, simulation experiences, including simulation lab scenarios, in-situ events and mock codes, computer-based training modules, and social learning events.
Methodology: Data was collected through surveys of response team members, assessing self-reported preparedness in emergency response and educational needs pre- and post-implementation. The education plan was built from ERT members self-reported needs and concepts of adult learning. Post-implementation data reassessing self-reported preparedness and effectiveness of implementation was collected at the 12-month mark.
Analysis: Data was analyzed to assess for themes in self-reported educational needs of ERT members. Recurrent themes of simulation, instructor-led classes, and post-emergency response debriefing were found. Delivery of education was structured to address these themes, and the training needs and differing learning styles of our adult learners. Education offerings were evenly spaced over a period of 12 months to enhance learning sustainment.
Results: Self-reported preparedness in responding to an emergency situation increased from 50.17% to 72.73% of those surveyed. 70% of ERT members surveyed indicated implemented education was either very effective or extremely effective in preparing them for emergency response, with no members indicating the education was not at all effective. Post-survey data revealed increased requests for more in-situ simulation to help prepare ambulatory clinical staff in emergency response.
Conclusion and future needs: A formal training and development plan for emergency response teams is needed to address the unique requirements of a multidisciplinary team. Our educational plan was successful in addressing preparedness of ERT members, though additional development is needed to increase and sustain preparedness over time. Ongoing feedback is necessary to ensure the education provided continues to meet the needs of ERT members.