The Science Journal of the American Association for Respiratory Care

2009 OPEN FORUM Abstracts

TRAINING THE RESPIRATORY THERAPIST FOR A SPECIAL DELIVERY UNIT

Leane Soorikian, Anne Ades; Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA

BACKGROUNDThe Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia opened a Special Delivery Unit in June 2008 for a high risk population of neonates. Respiratory therapists who would be caring for these neonates had no recent experience in delivery room resuscitations. A 16 hour training course was developed to help prepare them for this new experience. METHOD The training course consisted of seven didactic lectures on specific diagnoses, anticipating delivery room needs, special delivery room interventions outside of traditional Neonatal Resuscitation Program, and family interactions. Thirteen high fidelity simulations focused on diagnoses discussed in previous didactic lectures while incorporating Neonatal Resuscitation Program algorithms and reinforcing behavioral and teamwork skills. The training course was divided into four sessions. A Likert scale questionnaire was administered to respiratory therapists to assess comfort level in delivery room resuscitation. The questionnaire was administered before and after session one, after session four, and after participating in two real deliveries. RESULTS Ten respiratory therapists completed the course over four months. Prior to training, respiratory therapists were comfortable (score 3.8) participating in resuscitation of a normal newborn in the delivery room, comfortable (score 3.6) in resuscitation of neonates with congenital anomalies, and had a fair understanding (score 3.6) of their role in the delivery room. After the first session, the scores slightly improved to 4.3, 4.1 and 4.3. Post training course, respiratory therapists were very comfortable (score 4.7) in resuscitation of a normal newborn, very comfortable (score 4.3) participating in resuscitation of neonates with congenital anomalies, and had a good understanding (score 4.8) of their role in the delivery room. After two real deliveries there were minimal changes in respiratory therapist comfort level. CONCLUSION Increases in respiratory therapist comfort level were noted over the first three sessions but not impacted with actual delivery room experience. The simulation training and reinforced behavioral and teamwork skills adequately prepared the respiratory therapist for their role in the special delivery room. Sponsored Research - None

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