Simulation-based education is thought to be more effective than traditional teaching and recent studies have described its benefits on physician performance in several clinical areas. Despite this, not many studies have researched the benefits of simulation training in teaching mechanical ventilation. With that said, this study was composed to assess the approach of mannequin simulation-based training as a method to provide an interactive learning experience for residents and respiratory therapists, which could translate into better ventilator management performance.
Residents and respiratory therapists were randomized into 10 groups of 4 participants and each group was presented with the clinical scenarios of ARDS and COPD using the mannequin-based ventilator simulator. A 20 question multiple choice assessment which highlighted the principles of mechanical ventilation was administered before and after the simulation training.
The data from the combined 40 participants was analyzed using a two-tailed paired t-test. The results demonstrated a significant improvement in scores (p-value 0.019) after mannequin based training supporting the proposed hypothesis.
Mannequin based simulation training on mechanical ventilation can be a vital addition to traditional learning methods as demonstrated in this study. Mannequin based training does provide a more interactive learning experience which could translate into better performance.
Simulation training is more likely to be superior to traditional lecture based format in teaching mechanical ventilation to medical trainees (resident physicians) and respiratory therapists. Simulation can also be used to assess competency on an ongoing basis. Further studies are needed to assess how improvements in the simulation setting translates to the bedside performance and outcome measures.