The Science Journal of the American Association for Respiratory Care

2001 OPEN FORUM Abstracts

COMPETENCIESASSESSMENT THROUGH A SKILLS FAIR EVENT

Elsie M.Collado-Koman,BS, RRT, RCP; Timothy Morris, M.D.. UCSD Medical Center, San Diego Ca.

Background: Inour institution we have established a new method of continuously improving andevaluating the respiratory practitioner?s skills. To provide ongoing competencyassessment we conducted an annual Skills Fair in which all practitioners weretested in the areas such as patient assessment/interaction, technical knowledge,documentation, safety issues, and patient education.

Method: Threemonths before the skills fair a team of respiratory therapists leaders, educatorsand managers identified specific respiratory care procedures, prioritized by1) frequency of performance; 2) level of risk; and 3) recent changes in practiceguidelines. We separated procedures into those needing direct bedside observationand those that could be assessed in a workshop type setting. Two months beforethe Skills Fair we began offering inservices and workshops to provide staffthe opportunity to review and practice procedures before they were tested. RCPsalso received a ?Skills Fair Manual? that provided all the information the practitionerwas expected to know prior to attending the Skills Fair. It specified what theattendee is expected to verbalize, describe, analyzed, activate, assemble, anddisassemble during the activity. Therapists were given answers to 100% of thequestions prior to the event. The Skills Fair took place over a three-day period.Each attendee rotated through fifteen stations, performing a specific task andanswering related questions. Use of the Skills Fair Manual was not allowed duringthe actual event. Satisfactory performance was defined as 75% correct performanceof the procedures and related questions at each station. In addition, directbedside observation was required for those skills involving invasive proceduressuch as arterial puncture, tracheal intubations and bronchoscpy.

Results: Seventy-eightrespiratory care practitioners attended the Skills Fair. Sixty-three (80%) ofthe attendees passed all the stations by the end of the event. The fifteen (20%)of the attendees that did not pass were scheduled to attend a review class inthe month following the Skills Fair, after which they were reassessed. Overallstaff feedback of the activity based on written evaluation was outstanding.

Conclusion: ASkills Fair event is a highly effective way to maintain, improve and assessrespiratory care skills as well as identify areas where more training is needed.A Skills Fair also offers an excellent ?real-time? method for educators andleaders to increase staff motivation and improve the quality of services provided.Skills Fairs following this model can be adopted in other medical institutionsand tailored to suite its specific clinical needs.

 

OF-01-244

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