Assessing Organizational and Individual Needs Using High-Fidelity and Virtual Patient Simulations

April 9, 2013 9:45 – 11:15am

Angele Landriault, MD1,  Aimee Sarti, MD2,  Stephanie Sutherland, MD3, Frances Fothergill-Bourbonnais, MD2,  John Kim, MD2, Redouane Bouali, MD4, Timothy Willett, MD5, Stanley J. Hamstra, PhD3, Pierre Cardinal, MD MScEpi2 
 1Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada,  2University of Ottawa, 3AIME, 4Champlain LHIN,  5Sim-ONE

Background As part of a critical care needs assessment in a community hospital, we conducted high fidelity (HFS) and virtual patient simulations (VPS) to complement traditional data collection methods. We investigated the value of qualitative data collected from the debrief sessions and quantitative performance data for elucidating needs. Methods Teams of practitioners completed two 10-minute HFS cases and two VPS cases. The interprofessional simulations were recorded then scored using global rating scales. Debrief sessions were recorded, transcribed and analyzed using an inductive coding technique. Results Simulations and debriefings provided unique data. Analyses of team performance objectively identified three primary issues needing improvement: Use of personal protective equipment, overall crisis resource management, and treatment of shock. Qualitative data contributed to 15 of the 18 themes that emerged from all data sources, and elicited information about the community context, how patients navigate the system at different times of day, the roles and responsibilities of various professionals (which change depending on who is present in a crisis situation), and thought processes underlying behaviours during the simulations. Conclusion Simulations and debriefings can be useful for identifying unperceived educational needs and eliciting information about a clinical context and system function. They may be suitable substitutes to the typical focus group.