Purpose To evaluate the educational training in pediatric residency programs in interhospital transport. The survey seeks to assess various curricular structures that may be in place for residency training on the transport team focusing specifically on (1) qualifications and training prior to service on the team (pre-ransport), (2) senior physician support offered during the transport (intratransport), and (3) evaluation and feedback provided after the transport (post-transport).
Method A 33-item questionnaire was mailed to chief residents at all 193 nonmilitary pediatric programs listed in the American Medical Association's 2005-2006 Graduate Medical Education Directory in the continental United States. The study protocol received IRB approval.
Results After three mailings and telephone follow-up, three programs were excluded and responses were received from 150 programs for an overall response rate of 79%. Sixty-eight respondents did not use residents consistently on the transport teams and so were excluded from the data analysis. The remaining 82 were analyzed using descriptive statistics. Pretransport qualifications were identified in 83% of the programs that used residents and most frequently included advanced life support certification (69%) and completion of a specific rotation (42%). Specific training prior to transportation was provided in 70% of programs and frequently included resuscitation skills (58%) and airway management (55%). During the transport, 81% of programs always identified a senior physician to field calls from the team. Fifty-five percent of programs viewed the transport team as having educational value for residents. Written materials, such as a manual, were available to residents in 39% of programs. No specific method existed to evaluate resident performance in 57% of programs, with 20% using informal verbal feedback to the resident.
Conclusion Pretransport qualifications and training appropriately focused on the care of acutely ill children. Intratransport backup was common and resident evaluation after the completion of the transport was variable, relying mostly on informal feedback. The full educational value of pediatric transports may be realized, with additional attention being paid to enhancing various curricular components such as broader pretransport training experiences and more organized post-transport evaluation methods.
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