|Type||Journal Article - African Journal of Emergency Medicine|
|Title||An online learning programme improves traumatic brain injury guideline adherence in a South African Helicopter Emergency Medical Service|
It is difficult to initiate clinical quality improvement projects through continuous education in the prehospital environment due to the very nature of their mobile workplace and unpredictable presence in a specific location. This study reviews the impact of an online learning platform and the effect it had on the clinical quality of care offered to patients with traumatic brain injury (TBI) during Helicopter Emergency Medical Services (HEMS) operations.
A prospective improvement project was initiated to improve the clinical care for patients with TBI. A clinical monitoring tool, based on the prehospital care guidelines of the Brain Trauma Foundation was designed to assess the clinical quality of TBI patient care. The clinical indicators measured included initial Glasgow Coma Score, motor function, pupil size and reactivity, hypotension, hypoxaemia, carbon dioxide levels, temperature control, and patient position. A four month baseline monitoring was completed to determine the level of adherence to the guidelines, and subsequently an online, free access lecture series was presented to the HEMS operational staff. The clinical monitoring tool was applied during this time and afterwards to review adherence to guidelines.
A total of 71 cases of TBI were seen during the period of assessment and 64.8% of HEMS crew participated in the online training programme. A change in the average adherence to the clinical guidelines improved from 66.9% to 75.7% (p = 0.033) from the baseline monitoring period, to the period immediately after the online training.
Free and open online learning platforms can be implemented at little to no cost and can be accessed anywhere. This initiative has shown benefit in ensuring best care for critically ill TBI HEMS patients.
|»||South Africa - General Household Survey 2013|