Mode of Delivery: Development and Implementation of an Obstetrical In Situ Simulation Program
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OBJECTIVE: Simulation is increasingly valued as a learning tool in obstetrical practice. In situ simulation assesses the hands-on and critical thinking skills of a health care team within their clinical setting. We aimed to create an in situ simulation program to promote skills acquisition, enhance teamwork, and identify system limitations. METHODS: Key obstetrical emergencies were identified through a needs assessment. In situ simulations were developed to address these clinical presentations. During simulations, organizers and participants identified latent safety threats. Medical management was evaluated through comprehensive emergency-specific checklists. Leadership attitudes were assessed using the modified Perinatal Emergency Team Response Assessment tool. Following each simulation, team members were debriefed, and qualitative and quantitative feedback was solicited and aggregated by specialty and discipline. RESULTS: Simulations were conducted monthly at two academic centers over 14 months. Participation was interdisciplinary, including learners, staff physicians, nursing, and allied health team members from the departments of obstetrics, anesthesia, emergency medicine, and neonatology. Participants reported their involvement was enjoyable. Participants reported improvements in communication skills, content knowledge, and procedural knowledge. Participants favourably rated the spontaneity of simulations, clinically relevant scenarios, safe environment, and use of realistic equipment. Latent safety threats, related to equipment, medication, personnel, resources, and technical skills, were identified. CONCLUSION: We present the successful implementation of a comprehensive in situ simulation program. In situ simulation allows for deliberate practice of obstetrical emergencies and promotes a culture of patient safety. Lessons learned provide valuable data to identify limitations within our current practices and inform future policy change.
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