Healthcare sector today is undergoing rapid transformation in terms of quality service delivery, technology, operations and workforce management. One of the key concerns that the hospitals face today is that ‘whether the hospital staff is well aware of the latest developments in their field and if they have the necessary training with the equipment and procedures’. Though our healthcare industry has advanced in various aspects, one of the many factors that remain an obstacle in the path to better healthcare is high employee turnover rate. 

To avoid employee burnout, we need to have in place a solid and robust system to nurture, encourage, train and uplift their morale. Structured and effective induction and training programs can help new employees become productive quickly and adapt to the organization’s methods and culture. Skill development plays an important role in improving employee productivity. Hospitals need an end-to-end solution to deliver training, incorporate assessments, and provide real-time reports. They also need to implement a set of compliance parameters, especially related to training for continued learning.

The traditional modes of delivery of knowledge in the industry have certain limitations. Apart from the cost of physical infrastructure, their reach and efficiency do not feed well to the modern healthcare environment, where treatment, equipment, technologies, ethical obligations and regulations change constantly. Frequent classroom trainings can create an additional burden on the staff.

Improved Patient Outcome

Healthcare is one of the industries where online and blended learning is replacing traditional classroom learning at a great pace. As fast as it is spreading across industries, online learning justifies the pace by being cost effective, efficient, convenient and having greater reach. Online learning can happen on mobile devices or computers and can be accessed anytime and anywhere. The learning methodology can heavily leverage the learning management system (lms) to improve the learning outcomes, by making it interactive, comprehensive, tailored and engaging. This leads to a motivated and adept workforce, which in turn brings about improved patient care.

Data driven paperless assessments and time optimization

One significant advantage of online learning in healthcare industry is the evaluation of individual and group learning. With an lms based learning, administrators can track and analyse the progress with great ease, unlike in the paper based learning. Error free reports can be generated with a few clicks and are stored in the system for future reference. Reports can be simple as well as ‘course completion rate’ and can be granular to the level where we get insights on how individual learners are faring on particular topic and what learning methodology is most effective. This also means documentation for audit and compliance purposes is easy and simple, unlike in traditional mode of training where we need to pull out old log books and scan through worn out papers.

Cost effective and efficient

It’s one of the greatest advantages of online learning, learning management systems like iPC Health bring down the overall long term cost of learning and training in a hospital, as it doesn’t need physical space in hospital premises allocated for training, no travel required, and no paperwork. Training efficiency increases as learners engage with interactive courses and enjoy the liberty of time and place to access learning. The content in iPC Health is sourced from global authorities in healthcare domain and provides the best and  latest information. The platform is designed for multi purpose learning; like induction, training, continuous learning and compliance training.

As we see online training can provide a windfall of advantage for healthcare learning and training, the adoption rates at organizations are rising worldwide, it’s even more beneficial for developing economies like India, owing to cost and infrastructure advantage it provides. It saves on cost and time, helps improve patient outcome, provides efficient learning with greater reach, can be used for a wide range of documentation purposes, and can be used for a variety of other training and as a common source of information.

medical simulation

Simulation as a technology for learning and training has been around for a long time in different industries, notably in aviation, healthcare, architecture and high hazard industries like nuclear plants and even military. Simulation provides immersive learning which is more effective than traditional learning. With guided, real like experiences, the facts and concepts are best recalled and put into service when they are taught, practiced, and assessed in the context in which they will be used. When a learner is involved in the process, the memorization is deeper, the great Chinese philosopher Confucius said it 2500 years ago, “Tell me, and I will forget. Show me, and I may remember. Involve me, and I will understand”

Simulation based training puts emphasis on outcome more than on the process, when it’s evidence based the training provides patient safety and increased knowledge of real life situations, leading to better patient care and decreased casualties. Nursing is a practice oriented profession which requires both theoretical as well as practical knowledge and psychomotor skills, it is important to ensure the integration of theoretical knowledge into practice. Simulations are an excellent way of learning for nurses. Medical manikins simulate multiple anatomical functions helping nurses practice and gain skills to perform on real human bodies, manikins also eliminate the need of cadavers for training.

Computerized manikins are used as high fidelity simulators of human anatomy, they breathe, they have pulses, heart beats, they display blood pressure and other bodily parameters required for clinical observation, medical procedures can be performed on them and they give feedbacks. Nurses and physicians get real like experience on the plastic bodies before they move on to patients. This interactive form of learning increases the confidence of nurses and doctors in their initial days of handling emergencies giving them a strong footing on the processes and concepts.

The training conducted on manikins can be administered and tracked for analysis on a learning platform which integrates with the firmware of the manikin. iPC Scholar, a flagship online learning management system of Impelsys has been used by some of the world’s largest healthcare professional associations as a platform to manage training on manikins. The platform gives a comprehensive and broad analysis of students’ activities on the manikin, track their progress and skill proficiency and provide feedbacks to individual trainees. The platform also allows the training administrator to certify the students on completion of training.

In digital simulation real life scenarios are represented graphically on a screen, it’s a powerful combination of digital technology and simulation with the advantage of being able to represent complex scenarios, like visceral organs. Healthcare professionals can practice various processes and learn the working of complex equipment in virtual world eliminating any real risks to human lives. With digital simulation professionals have the freedom to practice whenever and as  often as they want, on the screen of their devices. For learning courses, digital simulation instills a sense of ownership of course completion for the learners, they do it in their own time and space and have the responsibility to learn and complete the tasks that are sanctioned. They are responsible for their own development.

Healthcare professionals require extensive knowledge in their discipline, with critical judgement and precise application of knowledge. A lapse in any of these could have an impact on an individual’s life or health. Healthcare is a dynamic industry with continuously evolving science, practices and usage of equipment. This necessitates a highly effective training and continuous learning for all the stakeholders in the profession, be it nurses, anaesthetists, surgeons, physicians or technicians. Simulation based trainings develop practical skill and knowledge required for critical processes and handling of hi tech equipment, it also develops confidence and attitude as it provides life like experience which engraves into a learner’s memory.

continuous medical education

Healthcare is one of the most vital and oldest industries of the world. A society with good healthcare system has better quality of individual lives which contribute to a smarter and stronger workforce adding pace to its overall development. Doctors, nurses and other healthcare personnels are hard working and busy professionals who require constant pursuit of expanded professional wisdom. They constantly need to update and re-train for the latest research in their field of work, need to make acquaintance with new tools when introduced, and need to be abreast with any regulatory changes, this is  a salient characteristic of health professionals, after all they save lives.

Continuous medical education is a highly specialized field and it has firmly established disciplines. Rapid development and specialization in medical education have come with a price, the more developed the discipline has become, the more specialized and fragmented the learning content is. Expected to reach USD 36.20 Billion by 2022 the global education market is primarily driven by the focus on improved healthcare, rise in public awareness of rights to good service and the need to treat chronic diseases with the high global burden.

Whereas continuous medical education and training in healthcare is a must-have, the traditional modes of delivery of knowledge in the industry have certain limitations. Apart from cost of physical infrastructure, their reach and efficiency do not feed well to the modern healthcare environment, where diseases, treatment, equipment, technologies, ethical obligations and regulations change constantly. Frequent classroom trainings on the latest developments create an additional burden on the staff who already have this legal obligation to take several course credits every year in order to maintain their status as active practitioners.

Healthcare is one of the industries where online and blended learning is replacing traditional classroom learning at a great pace. As fast as it is spreading across industries for corporate training and continuous professional learning, online learning justifies the pace by being cost effective, efficient, convenient and having greater reach.

Online learning doesn’t require a classroom setup, thus saving on time and cost. However, in medical profession several trainings require lab based observation, in such cases blended learning comes into play by providing the best of the both world.

Online learning is personal and is accessed through smartphones, tablets and laptops at your own choosing of time and place, some employees at hospitals are busier than other and their presence is critically important in some places, hence they can’t afford to attend classroom trainings at fixed timings. Online learning provides the solution.

Medical learning involves vast amount of images and figures – consider x-rays, anatomy, organs, ECG, MRI etc – elearning makes it convenient to inculcate multimedia and interactivity into the courses. Users of elearning have the advantage of accessing the multimedia content at their own time, examine it at their own pace  and study it as long as they need. Online courseware is designed and built to be engaging and interactive, using quality images, video, audio and animation to help users comprehend and retain knowledge.

LMS platforms also provide an excellent system to provide feedbacks on learning progress, we can get detailed reports on teams and individuals on learning pace, exams, time spent on topics and other granular reports. We can maintain a database of reports for reference without any external or manual work. Based on student progress and feedback courses can be managed, eg, courseware can be modified to make it more effective.

LMS or learning management system is a versatile tool for an organization. Apart from continuous medical education, online learning can be used for equipment training (provided by the equipment manufacturer), update on new drugs, and compliance trainings.

Compliance trainings are fundamental in modern healthcare where accreditations, recognition and government grants require hospitals to fulfil multitude of criteria (most of the hospitals struggle to keep up with the changing regulations), the goal of these regulations is to maintain overall quality of healthcare. LMS for online learning like iPC Health from Impelsys can be a key contributor in providing medical training as well as training on new and existing regulations to fulfil legal criteria for government accreditation. iPC Health is a digital content and learning delivery solution specifically designed for hospitals to improve healthcare outcomes by fulfilling the training, development and compliance needs of healthcare professionals.

As we see online training can provide a windfall of advantage for healthcare learning and training, the adoption rates at organizations are rising worldwide, it’s even more beneficial for developing economies owing to cost and infrastructure advantage it provides. It saves on cost, provides efficient learning with greater reach and can be used for variety of other training and as a common source of information. Online platforms like iPC Health can also be used for employee induction and the initial training.

There are many reasons that elearning should be included in healthcare industry for continuous medical education, equipment training, compliance training and HR training. Healthcare industry has been on top of the list to use digital technology in various fields like diagnosis, treatment, administration and other, and it’s now ready to reap benefit for learning and training as well, it’s the right time that hospitals should consider this. Finding the right tool is crucial as the initial experience can set the pulse for a long future. Implementation of LMS in an organization will certainly bring some changes and the staff needs to be digitally educated and prepared for this. When all is done the benefits will start showing in no time.