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The potential of blended learning in education and training for advanced civilian and military trauma care

Journal article
Authors L. Sonesson
K. Boffard
Lars Lundberg
Martin Rydmark
K. Karlgren
Published in Injury - International Journal of the Care of the Injured
Volume 49
Issue 1
Pages 93-96
ISSN 0020-1383
Publication year 2018
Published at Institute of Clinical Sciences, Department of Surgery
Institute of Biomedicine
Pages 93-96
Language en
Keywords E-learning, Blended learning, Web-based learning, Medical education, Military medicine, Defence, General & Internal Medicine, Emergency Medicine, Orthopedics, Surgery
Subject categories Surgery


Introduction: In the field of advanced care of the complex trauma patient, there is an emerging need for focused education and training. However, several hospitals do not support further education and training in this field, and the challenge of releasing time for physicians and nurses is well-known. Educational strategies using blended learning, which combines traditional classroom methods with modern computer-assisted methods and media, have not yet been widely used. This study analysed the educational challenges and areas for improvement, according to senior physicians and nurses, and investigated the potential use of blended learning. Method: The setting was an international course, Definitive Surgical Trauma Care (DSTC) - Military Version, part of a programme which prepares health professionals for work during extreme conditions. The sample consisted of senior physicians and nurses, participating in the course in September 2015. A survey was completed, interviews were performed and a post-course survey was conducted 18 months later in March 2017. Results: The most difficult aspect of learning how to manage the complex trauma patient, was the lack of real practice. Even though the respondents were knowledgeable in advanced trauma, they lacked personal experience in managing complex trauma cases. Cases presented during the course represented significantly greater complexity of injury compared to those usually seen in hospitals and during military deployment. The following educational challenges were identified from the study: (1) Lack of experience and knowledge of advanced trauma care. (2) Lack of the use of blended learning as support for education and training. (3) Limited time available for preparation and reflection in the education and training process. (4) Lack of support for such education and training from home hospitals. (5) The unfulfilled requirement for multidisciplinary team-training in the military medical environment. Conclusion: Educational strategies and methods, such as blended learning can support education and training, and the learning process by unlimited practice in reasoning and decision making in virtual patients. It can also provide flexibility and mobility for senior health professionals and their home hospitals, and contribute to an improved military pre-deployment training with less time strain on the civilian home hospitals. (c) 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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