What is the impact of structured resuscitation training on healthcare practitioners, their clients and the wider service? A BEME systematic review: BEME Guide No. 20

Med Teach. 2012;34(6):e349-85. doi: 10.3109/0142159X.2012.681222.


A large number of resuscitation training courses (structured resuscitation training programmes (SRT)) take place in many countries in the world on a regular basis. This review aimed to determine whether after attending SRT programmes, the participants have a sustained retention of resuscitation knowledge and skills after their initial acquisition and whether there is an improvement in outcome for patients and/or their healthcare organisation after the institution of an SRT programme. All research designs were included, and the reported resuscitation training had to have been delivered in a predefined structured manner over a finite period of time. Data was extracted from the 105 eligible articles and research outcomes were assimilated in tabular form with qualitative synthesis of the findings to produce a narrative summary. Findings of the review were: SRTs result in an improvement in knowledge and skills in those who attend them, deterioration in skills and, to a lesser extent, knowledge is highly likely as early as three months following SRTs, booster or refresher sessions may improve an individual's ability to retain resuscitation skills after initial training and the instigation of resuscitation training in a healthcare institution significantly improves clinical management of resuscitations and patient outcome (including survival) after resuscitation attempts.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Clinical Competence*
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice*
  • Humans
  • Learning
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic
  • Resuscitation / education*
  • Time Factors