Experiences from a Virtual Multi-center Senior Neonatal-Perinatal Fellow Simulation Boot camp During the COVID-19 Pandemic

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ESPR449
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Abstract: :

Background: Simulation boot camp experiences focusing on complex high-acuity low occurrence (HALO) scenarios and difficult conversations are a valuable educational experience for neonatal fellows. Tufts Medical Center has conducted an annual senior fellow multi-center simulation boot camp since 2017. COVID has limited the number of learners in clinical environments and has further highlighted the importance of such advanced skill simulation. COVID has also increased the number of neonatal tele-consults for which the neonatal fellows are ill-prepared. Hence, we aimed to conduct a regional virtual simulation boot camp for senior neonatal-perinatal fellows involving telemedicine-managed HALO scenarios as well as tele-consults for difficult conversations.

Objective: Virtual Simulation Boot Camp is feasible to conduct; and is as effective as in-person simulation boot camp for 2nd and 3rd year neonatal fellows in increasing confidence to manage HALO scenarios, practice difficult conversations which enhances job preparedness.

Design: We conducted a virtual multi-center simulation boot camp for senior (2nd and 3rd year) neonatal fellows focusing on HALO scenarios.  The day included total 7 scenarios: a virtual disaster preparedness discussion, 2 virtual difficult conversation scenarios and 4 clinical scenarios with hands on providers set up at the host institute, which were led by a fellow learner as the team leader virtually. Pre-and post-boot camp surveys were distributed to the participants to assess impact on confidence in areas addressed by the case scenarios; and to elicit feedback on overall experience. Survey results from 2020 (virtual boot camp) were compared to 2017-2019 (in-person boot camps). 


Results: 15 fellows participated in the boot camp from 5 different regional fellowship programs. Figure 1 a) shows the confidence increase during in-person boot camp (2017-19) with various scenarios and procedures; b) shows the confidence increase during the virtual boot camp (2020). Figure 2 shows overall feedback that the virtual boot camp seemed as effective as the in-person boot camps in job-preparedness, acquisition of teamwork skills, and enhanced learning for the senior neonatal fellows. 


Conclusion: A virtual multi-center simulation boot camp for senior neonatal-perinatal fellows is perceived to be as effective as an in-person simulation boot camp in increasing confidence in HALO scenarios, difficult conversation and disaster preparedness. Virtual simulations can be a powerful educational tool for the acquisition of leadership skills required for tele-medicine in neonatology in remote management of such high acuity scenarios.

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Tufts Children's Hospital at Tufts Medical Center
Tufts Children's Hospital at Tufts Medical Center
Tufts Children's Hospital at Tufts Medical Center
Tufts Children's Hospital at Tufts Medical Center

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