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September 2011, Volume 41 Number 9 , p 14 - 17


  • Ann-Marie C. Baker BSN, RN, CPAN
  • Amy L.C. Tyler BSN, RN, CEN


AS EDUCATORS, we strive to create realistic, meaningful, and informative educational programs for our nursing staff. We'd received many requests for additional review and practice for emergent situations, so in January 2009, our team of staff-development specialists set out to create an educational plan for responding to a simulated "code blue" (cardiopulmonary arrest).The staff-development specialists at Christiana Care Health System in Wilmington, Del., developed our educational plan using our nursing professional practice care delivery model. It combines Patricia Benner's novice-to-expert nursing theory with a modified form of the American Association of Critical Care Nurses' synergy model.1 This article describes our plan and our results.In response to staff requests for education, we provided sessions for nurses in our Virtual Education and Simulation Technology Center. We implemented code blue scenarios using high-fidelity human patient simulators (manikins) that are remarkably realistic. (See Getting to know "Stan.")Nursing staff members were encouraged to attend sessions scheduled before and after shifts and, when staffing coverage was available, during shifts. Although these initial sessions received positive reviews, they were poorly attended. Staff didn't want to come in early or stay late despite receiving compensation for their work hours. We often had an odd mix of nurses from different units during the simulated code blue, decreasing realism. Nursing leadership encouraged us to explore a -different approach to address this important educational need. We began by conducting a literature review to assess current techniques for code blue education and to evaluate the role of simulation, if any, in current research.A review of the literature (ROL) showed that simulation is being used for education more frequ-ently and that most simulation-based education research projects are physician based. Wayne et al. found that simulation improved the quality of care

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