Developing a blended learning postgraduate teaching programme in anaesthesia: pandemic and beyond

Postgrad Med J. 2021 Apr 30;postgradmedj-2021-140155. doi: 10.1136/postgradmedj-2021-140155. Online ahead of print.

Abstract

One of the many challenges facing doctors in training during the COVID-19 pandemic was a significant reduction in postgraduate medical education in the form of formal teaching. Consequently, we sought to provide a blended and asynchronous teaching programme that would be delivered to anaesthetic trainees preparing for their postgraduate examinations. Six sessions of 90-minute duration were delivered during the months July, August and September 2020. Each of the six sessions was delivered live using a variety of online educational tools in addition to traditional didactic-style teaching by the presenters. Participants submitted requests for topics to be covered by the presenters in the final of the six sessions. The sessions were recorded and later uploaded onto an online educational learning platform for viewing at the participants' discretion. The live nature of the sessions ensured participant interaction and a sense of community that trainees had come to expect from previous face-to-face teaching sessions prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.Evaluation was via qualitative and quantitative means using preset questions using the Likert scale and a free-text comments box. The results demonstrated positive feedback across all sessions with particular relevance to the interactive element of the course, the content and delivery.This article describes the requirement for a method of continuing postgraduate medical education in an era where traditional face-to-face teaching is not possible and how the introduction of various innovative educational applications and resources can be used to further postgraduate medical education in the future.

Keywords: COVID-19; adult anaesthesia; adult intensive & critical care; basic sciences; medical education & training.