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Updates on the use of Simulation Based Medical Education within this Speciality
Since the very beginning of medical simulation, Anaesthetists have taken a leading role in its development. Anaesthetising patients causes both predictable and unpredictable rapid changes in their physical state; alongside this the clinical situation is further complicated by both patient co-morbidities and the surgery itself.
Simulation provides an excellent method of training anaesthetists to manage these changes and to practice for common and rare critical incidents, so that if they occur in real life the anaesthetist is better prepared.
In the North East of England all our new anaesthetists attend a simulation-training course to give them an understanding of the scope and difficulties of anaesthetic practice prior to undertaking their first “on-call” anaesthetic. This is built upon at later stages in training with further critical incident training with a focus on non-technical skills and paediatric emergency management courses.
With the development of Intensive Care Medicine as a separate specialty, new challenges around acute and chronic medical management and multi-disciplinary team management arise. These have led to the development of specific simulation programs to address some of the difficulties encountered in daily practice and rare events. Intensive care units around the North East are developing the use of in-situ simulation both to train and to “system test” their protocols, seeking to eliminate latent threats to patient safety.
Dr Ian Hunter
Academic Lead for Simulation and Human Factor
Consultant in Anaesthesia and Intensive Care Medicine