Emergency Medicine Workshop for PHC Nurses in eThekwini
UKZN’s Discipline of Family Medicine recently hosted an Emergency Medicine Workshop (EM) for Primary Health Care (PHC) nurses in primary emergency care following a request from the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Health’s eThekwini district.
Co-ordinated by Dr Mergan Naidoo, a Lecturer and specialist in Family Medicine at UKZN, the workshop was designed for emergency room nurses and doctors based at hospitals and community health centres.
Said Naidoo: ‘The EM workshop was a collaboration between the Disciplines of Family Medicine, Emergency Medicine, Paediatrics and Trauma Surgery.
‘The course offers a modular programme which is based on minimal didactic input and greater emphasis on emergency simulation training. Simulation training has been acknowledged by the World Health Organization as a meaningful way to provide educational intervention.’
The workshop covered the following topics: An introduction to paediatrics using the (Emergency triage and treatment) ETAT approach, resuscitation, Triage, HIV emergencies, an approach to the rape survivor, a basic approach to trauma, medical emergencies (diabetes mellitus, hypertension, asthma), an approach to the unconscious/fitting patient, toxicology in the emergency room, an approach to a patient with a cardiac condition, emergency use of radiology, emergency equipment needs and ethics in the emergency room.
The PHC workshop was adapted to meet the PHC nurse needs so some of the modules of the original programme were not covered in this workshop.
Emphasis at the workshop was on using clinical skills to assess and manage patients appropriately. The simulation stations reinforced the use of clinical skills and clinical reasoning as a means of making decisions in the best interests of the patient.
Alignment to the needs of the DoH ideal clinic was made and participants were encouraged to reflect on their own practice and make small changes in their work environment to improve their practice.
Feedback from participants was excellent with many PHC nurses indicating that they could immediately start implementing measures to their current practice. Of particular relevance was the use of the South African Triage Tool as a means of prioritising sick patients.
Nurses indicated they would also start using the information and skills gained in all of the clinical simulations.
Feedback from the eThekwini district Clinical Specialist PHC Co-ordinator, Mrs Dudu Ntombela, was extremely positive. She said: ‘We would like to express our sincere gratitude to Dr Naidoo and the team of doctors who facilitated the Emergency Workshop for PHC Nurses. The workshop was well structured and very informative.’