When asked her advice for other sites who are interested in setting up an in-situ neonatal resuscitation simulation program, Nicole Jasso, Clinical Nurse Educator at UC Irvine, turns to the famous Nike slogan. “Just do it,” she says, “there are always going to be barriers, today is always going to be not a good day, but with simulation, you just need to jump in and try.”
UC Irvine established a multi-disciplinary simulation program in 2010 and had been conducting annual simulations ever since when they decided to join CPQCC’s Simulating Success collaborative in 2018. They knew they wanted to increase the number of simulations they offered and, says Jasso, understand if simulation was having an impact on patient outcomes. Through the course of the collaborative, UC Irvine has been able to grow its program to now offer monthly simulations and has seen increased staff engagement in the simulation and debriefing process.
As Simulating Success begins to wrap up, we asked Jasso to reflect on some of the main lessons her team has learned.
Work through barriers as you go. Space has been one of the biggest challenges for the UC Irvine team. The simulation equipment that CPQCC has provided as part of the project is portable and can be easily moved from room to room, but finding private space to debrief has been a struggle. Rather than let this deter them, the team has been resourceful, applying the “just do it” mentality and scouting out other locations to debrief wherever they can find them.
Refine your aim statement. The UC Irvine team focused on two aims: offering simulations twice per month and reducing the number of infants ≤ 1,500 grams that are intubated in the delivery room. While they can track data for both of these aims, looking back, Jasso wishes they had spent more time consulting colleagues from multiple disciplines to ensure that the link between increased simulations and improved patient outcomes was clear. Her advice to other centers? “Think about how you’re going to show that you are better off today than you were yesterday. Think about what you need to measure to prove that and work with the resources CPQCC provides and [colleagues in] multiple disciplines to refine your aim.”
Use a “train the trainer” approach to develop champions for your program. Before joining the collaborative, UC Irvine’s simulation team was small, consisting of just Jasso, a part-time nurse educator; Neonatologist, Dr. Rebecca Coleman; and Respiratory Educator, Jared Klotz. As part of Simulating Success, they established a “train the trainer” program and now have three additional simulation instructors. This has enabled them to offer simulations monthly on both the day and night shifts, something they did not have adequate staffing to do previously, and it has meant that they have more champions for simulation on the ground.
Participating in Simulating Success has inspired the UC Irvine team to think out of the box, challenge themselves to work through barriers, and has kept them focused on achieving their goals. “It [won’t] be perfect right away, but…you just need to do it.”