Objective: To analyse the initial experience in mechanical ventilation courses held by the Respiratory Group of the Spanish Paediatric Intensive Care Society.
Materials and methods: From 2002 to 2006, 15 courses on paediatric mechanical ventilation were held in eight hospitals in Spain, attended by a total of 367 physicians (53.4 % trainees and 46.6 % staff physicians from Paediatrics, Neonatology or Emergency). An initial theoretical written test of 40 questions was completed by participants, followed by short theory classes and practical workshops based on clinical situations, with ventilators and ventilation simulators, with five to seven students per workshop. At the end of the course participants completed a theoretical written test, in which it was considered necessary to answer correctly at least 70% of the questions, a practical evaluation (with assessment grades from 1 to 5) and a written survey about the quality of the course (with assessment grades from 0 to 10).
Results: In the initial test, only 20% of students answered 70% of questions correctly, whilst in the final test 93% hit this target, (p < 0.001). In the practical evaluation, 96% of students demonstrated sufficient acquisition of practical skills (grades equal to or greater than 3). In the participant survey, the course methodology was rated at 8.7 +/- 0.5, organisation 8.7 +/- 0.4, teaching staff 9.2 +/- 0.2, theoretical classes 8.7 +/- 0.4 and practical sessions 8.8 +/- 0.3.
Conclusions: Mechanical ventilation courses are a useful educational method for health professionals in theoretical and practical mechanical ventilation.
(c) 2007 Wiley-Liss, Inc.