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Use of a virtual patient simulator to teach cardiac arrhythmia recognition and management to final-year medical students
  1. Pratik Solanki
  1. Medical Education Department, Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust, Harlow, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Pratik Solanki, Medical Education Department, Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust, Harlow CM20 1QX, UK; pratik.solanki{at}nhs.net

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Introduction

Cardiac arrhythmia management, particularly life-threatening arrhythmias, remain a topic of significant anxiety among newly qualified doctors. Although arrhythmia training is part of the curriculum for numerous final-year medical students, the tendency is for it to be taught in a didactic way. Thus, at Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust, a district general hospital in the UK, we developed a final-year medical student teaching session for arrhythmia recognition and management using a virtual patient monitor and simulator.

Methods

The aims of the session were to give students both practical real-time experience, using the software developed by Laerdal,1 and the ability to discuss recognition and management strategies with their peers. In total, six tutorials were organised with 8–10 students in each. The sessions consisted of four case scenarios, with the first three involving the tachyarrhythmias supraventricular tachycardia, fast atrial fibrillation, atrial flutter, ventricular tachycardia and ventricular fibrillation, and the final case involving the bradycardias second-degree heart block and third-degree heart …

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