Teaching Acute Neurologic Physical Therapy Management through Interprofessional Simulation

Purpose : Simulation is an effective method to develop clinical decision making skills in physical therapist students. While research has demonstrated its efficacy in cardiopulmonary physical therapy, use of high and low fidelity simulation in neurologic patient management is limited. This report aims to demonstrate the efficacy, feasibility and student outcomes associated with educating through simulation in an entry-level neurorehabilitation curriculum.Description : Students participated in a small group, high or low fidelity simulation activity involving a patient with a neurologic impairment in one of three settings: ICU, acute care, or acute neurorehabilitation. Preparation for this activity included: (1) a graded pre-planning case report (2) proposed patient treatment plan and (3) briefing with the patientÕs nurse prior to the simulation. Students worked as a team during a 25 minute simulation to problem solve changes in treatment strategy based on patient presentation and used their clinical decision making skills to respond to adverse or unexpected events. Following the simulation, students engaged in group reflection and debriefing. Methods to reduce student anxiety and optimize learning as described in the literature were utilized, including an authentic environment, exposure to the scenario and the debriefing questions before the lab, and students were not videotaped nor were they graded on performance in the simulation.Summary of Use : 109 students participated in an interprofessional simulation as a component of their neurologic rehabilitation course. The simulation experience was facilitated by 8 faculty members; one who was a certified simulation instructor. Post-exercise student reflections demonstrated a significant impact of the authentic hospital environment on learning, and ability to identify limitations in decision making such as the most appropriate response to changes in intracranial pressure and seizure activity. 100% of faculty reported the simulation activity was feasible and successful in gaining insight into the studentsÕ current level of competence with treating patients with neurological impairments and managing emerging situations. The overall class average increased modestly from the previous year (92.8 from a 92.6), however the range in grades decreased by 8% with the lowest course grade rising from 76 to an 83.Importance to Members: This pilot use of simulation to teach interprofessional patient management and clinical decision-making in a neurorehabilitation curriculum demonstrates feasibility and successful outcomes for students. Insight gained from this experience will provide faculty with working knowledge needed to implement simulation methodology in their own neurologic curriculum. This study provides preliminary evidence that use of high and low fidelity simulation may be utilized to achieve learning objectives for acute neurologic physical therapy management.

BACK to Abstract Results

  • Control #: 2017066
  • Type: Poster
  • Event/Year: CSM2015
  • Authors: Sheri R. Kiami, Pamela Donlan, Kristin C. Greenwood
  • Keywords: Interprofessional Simulation|Neurorehabilitation Education

BACK to Abstract Results