Development of comprehensive, meaningful training on telephone triage is critical for patient safety and nurse satisfaction. Simulation has become an integral element of nursing education, and evidence demonstrates improved patient safety and adherence to standards with experiential learning such as simulation.
Traditional training for telephone triage has consisted primarily of didactic learning and storytelling. Although both of these teaching techniques are valid, they fall short of providing the experience necessary to support nurses practicing in this challenging and risky environment.
The goal of this program is to utilize prerecorded simulated telephone calls between a standardized patient and RN in telephone triage training. Simulated calls were developed to allow nurses to observe and discuss the use of the nursing process, appropriate disposition, standards of practice, and challenging calls such as disruptive behavior and threat of suicide.
Future work will look at patient safety improvements and nurse satisfaction following this training. To date, over 600 nurses have been trained using this method with high evaluation scores.