August 29, 2019

Successful Cath Lab in-situ simulation

Recently, the HRO Transformation Team organised and delivered another successful in-situ simulation, this time held in the Cath Lab and supported by our multi-disciplinary staff.

Brooke Williams, Project Support Officer, said Northern Health is holding simulations for quality and safety purposes, and not for education purposes, which is what is usually done in hospitals.

“We are targeting reoccurring adverse events and simulating with a multi-disciplinary focus. For example, for the code blue in the Cath Lab, there will be anaesthetics, ED, cardiology and ICU attending for that code. What we’re trying to look at is how all the teams interact in that situation when the code is called,” she explained.

Besides the team responding to the code, the simulation also had three observers – designated people whose job it is to observe and report back on what they see.

Brooke explained the importance of having in-situ simulation in different environments.

“The Cath Lab simulation was different compared to the simulation that happened in ED, as there were more teams attending. It was a different problem, a different unit and different equipment. Our goal is to do one a month, and long term we’d like to do a different adverse event in a different location, for a different code,” she said.

Dr Nancy Sadka, Emergency Physician, said the beauty of having a simulation is that the team can actually pause the scenario to regroup.

“The simulation is a practice, and these are the nice things you can’t do in real life. In this environment, we can pause and rewind two minutes, we can’t do that in real life. This scenario is based on a real patient who arrested in the Cath Lab, but it happened a while ago,” she said.

Dr Megan Robb, Director of Emergency, said having a hospital-wide simulation is important because teams that work together train together.

“Through training such as this, we can actually get our processes right, to be sure that we get the best quality care for our patients and the safest care. So actually having the whole hospital engaged to make sure we do the right thing is really important,” she said.

“This also gives us an opportunity to test our processes and policies to make sure they work. It also means the teams that we work with get to know each other, as that improves the overall care for our patients.”

The simulation was a great success, as it highlighted a number of potential quality and safety improvements in the space, and conversations on the day have already resulted in discussion about some immediate positive changes.