Simulation-based pediatric training: A French national survey

Arch Pediatr. 2020 Sep 30;S0929-693X(20)30189-5. doi: 10.1016/j.arcped.2020.08.003. Online ahead of print.


Introduction: To have an overview of pediatric medical simulation within a country would be helpful to improve the offer and quality of teaching. The main objective of this study was to identify the scope for simulation-based teaching in pediatrics in France.

Methods: An assessment of professional practices was conducted by means of a national survey conducted among all university hospitals between 20 May and 6 August 2018. A standardized GoogleForm® was created and sent to heads of simulation centers or persons responsible for pediatric simulation. Descriptive analyses and comparisons of centers with and without university trainers as well as with and without research activity were performed.

Results: All 34 teaching hospitals or faculties of medicine responded to our survey. Of these, 31 had a simulation center. There was a median of nine trainers per center (interquartile range: 5-13). Most used simulation for communication and teamwork, as well as for technical and relational skills. These sessions were mainly dedicated to residents and health professionals. All centers reported working on high-fidelity newborn mannequins and 84% used low-fidelity newborn mannequins. Research activity was declared by 14 centers (45%), but only six of these had at least one publication. No difference was identified between centers with and without university trainers or with and without research activity.

Conclusion: Compared with the 2012 report, 19 new centers have emerged within 6 years in France (+158%). Pursuing research to evaluate the impact of simulation programs on physician skills and patient management would appear to be important.

Keywords: Medical education; Pediatric simulation; Simulation centers.