Endoscopy is a challenging and complex medical procedure that involves a variety of diagnostic methods performed to examine the interior of a hollow organ or cavity of the body. Hence, it is important to ensure that the practitioners—be it endoscopists or the staff nurses—involved in this procedure have sound theoretical knowledge and practical skills. The risk of complications arising from this intricate procedure is higher when less-experienced practitioners are involved. In the light of this, the East Yorkshire School of Endoscopy (EYSE) designed a training course that uses simulation to help endoscopy nurses enhance their practical knowledge and improve their understanding of the technical aspects of modern-day endoscopy. While the course was initially designed for nurses, now, it is also being offered to healthcare assistants (HCAs) working in the endoscopy department. It is a one-day training course encompassing theoretical learning followed by simulation training.
Simulation provides a great opportunity for practicing clinical skills in a safe environment and has been used to teach basic endoscopy techniques for several years now. In addition, recent advancements in technology allow VR simulators to be incorporated into a variety of endoscopic training programs to improve the skill among trainees, which will ultimately result in improved patient comfort and safety.
The training offered by EYSE consists of nine hours of face-to-face learning delivered by three trainers—a consultant gastroenterologist, a nurse practitioner, and an endoscopy sister. There are two workstations in the training center where trainees can put the endoscopic theory into practice in a controlled and safe environment. Porcine model is used to replicate real-life situations and demonstrate hands-on endoscopy techniques. Trainees are given the opportunity to use an endoscope and conduct the necessary procedure, giving them insights into the complex nature of the process and helping understand the challenges faced by endoscopists.
Hands-on training is essential for patient safety. And, EYSE’s course allows trainees to work on porcine models that are realistic, ensuring they can practice and learn in a relaxed environment rather than in a real-world setting where patients are potentially at risk. The course encompasses different aspects of learning—visual, practical, and theoretical—thereby ensuring that everyone is being trained appropriately. EYSE also believes that this will help healthcare trusts respond to the high demand for skilled and confident endoscopy nursing staff.