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Can DVD simulations provide an effective alternative for paramedic clinical placement education?
  1. B Williams1,
  2. T Brown2,
  3. F Archer1
  1. 1
    Department of Community Emergency Health and Paramedic Practice, School of Primary Health Care, Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences, Monash University, Victoria, Australia
  2. 2
    Department of Occupational Therapy, School of Primary Health Care, Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences, Monash University, Victoria, Australia
  1. Mr B Williams, Department of Community Emergency Health and Paramedic Practice, Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences, Monash University – Peninsula Campus, McMahons Road, Frankston, Victoria 3199 Australia; brett.williams{at}med.monash.edu.au

Abstract

Objective: This study aimed to evaluate the usability of DVD simulations, the impact on student learning satisfaction and the potential for using DVD simulations to reduce the clinical placement burden on the current healthcare system. The clinical DVD simulations were underpinned by interprofessional educational principles that supported clinical placements for paramedic students.

Method: Eleven DVD simulations were developed by academic staff members from Monash University with input and feedback from a team of healthcare professionals. Students (N = 97) from the Bachelor of Emergency Health at Monash University viewed the DVD simulations. Students’ perceptions, attitudes and thoughts about the clinical relevance of the simulations were assessed by completing a standardised self-report 7-point Likert scale questionnaire (7 indicating the highest satisfaction score). Qualitative data assessing if and how the DVD simulations had influenced paramedic students’ clinical placement learning experiences were also collected via two focus groups (n = 6).

Results: Overall, paramedic students positively perceived the DVD simulations with relation to learning satisfaction (mean (SD) 5.14 (1.14), 95% CI 4.91 to 5.37) and information processing quality (mean (SD) 5.50 (0.83), 95% CI 5.33 to 5.67). The simulations maintained students’ attention and concentration (mean (SD) 4.35 (0.95), 95% CI 4.15 to 4.54) and provided clinical authenticity and relevance to practice (mean (SD) 4.27 (0.65), 95% CI 4.14 to 4.40). A number of themes emerged from the focus group data including the impact on employment, greater appreciation of healthcare teamwork and notion of interdisciplinary teamwork, the fact that DVD simulations have the capacity to replace some clinical placement rotations and should be integrated into standard curriculum, and that varying amounts of learning wastage occur during clinical placements.

Conclusions: DVD simulations with an interprofessional education focus were developed. Paramedic students reported the simulations as being educationally, professionally and clinically relevant. The students also identified some aspects of current clinical placements that may be replaced by using DVD simulations. The cost benefit of using interprofessional DVD simulations to supplement and replace certain clinical placement rotations should be investigated further.

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Footnotes

  • Competing interests: None.

  • Funding: Funding was provided by the State Government of Victoria, Department of Human Services (Service and Workforce Program).

  • Ethics approval: Ethics committee approval was obtained from the Monash University Standing Committee on Ethics in Research Involving Humans.

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