Experience using the Anesoft Anesthesia Simulator


Schwid HA, Souter KJ:

Cost-effectiveness of screen-based simulation for anesthesiology residents:
18 year experience

Anesthesiology 2009; A1247

BACKGROUND: In order to reduce the high cost of simulation training we developed a simulation curriculum for the management of anesthesia critical incidents using a screen-based simulator. For the last 18 years the Anesthesiology Department at the University of Washington has required all anesthesia residents to complete ten simulated cases using the program prior to the end of their CA-1 year. We present a cost accounting for the screen-based simulations and evaluation of its educational impact.

METHODS: Residents are given access to the screen-based anesthesia simulator program on departmental computers and also on their own personal computers via download from the departmental website. Residents are given an instruction sheet and a 20 minute introductory session to learn to use the software. Each of the 10 required cases includes learning objectives and automated debriefing. Residents complete the cases on their own and send case logs to an anesthesia attending for review and further feedback. Most participants worked 6-8 hours with the screen-based simulator to successfully complete the required cases.

RESULTS: Residents rated the screen-based simulations highly worthwhile and very realistic. They felt better prepared to handle emergency scenarios, had one or more similar clinical experiences and were stimulated to read about the emergencies.The cost to implement the screen-based anesthesia simulator course was about $18 per hour of simulation time vs about $1000 per hour for mannequin-based training (Simulation in Healthcare 2006; 1: 109.)

SUMMARY: An 18 year experience with screen-based simulation involving about 360 anesthesia residents and 3600 simulation sessions with debriefing resulted in cost of $17 per hour vs $1000 per hour for mannequin-based simulation training. Resident surveys and published studies show that screen-based simulation is an effective educational modality.

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