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Original article
peer-reviewed

Exploring Mechanisms for Effective Technology-Enhanced Simulation-based Education in Wilderness Medicine: A Systematic Review



Abstract

Background: Technology-enhanced simulation is well-established in healthcare teaching curricula, including those regarding wilderness medicine. Compellingly, the evidence base for the value of this educational modality to improve learner competencies and patient outcomes are increasing.

Aims: The aim was to systematically review the characteristics of technology-enhanced simulation presented in the wilderness medicine literature to date. Then, the secondary aim was to explore how this technology has been used and if the use of this technology has been associated with improved learner or patient outcomes.

Methods: EMBASE and MEDLINE were systematically searched from 1946 to 2014, for articles on the provision of technology-enhanced simulation to teach wilderness medicine. Working independently, the team evaluated the information on the criteria of learners, setting, instructional design, content, and outcomes.

Results: From a pool of 37 articles, 11 publications were eligible for systematic review. The majority of learners in the included publications were medical students, settings included both indoors and outdoors, and the main focus clinical content was initial trauma management with some including leadership skills. The most prevalent instructional design components were clinical variation and cognitive interactivity, with learner satisfaction as the main outcome.

Conclusions: The results confirm that the current provision of wilderness medicine utilizing technology-enhanced simulation is aligned with instructional design characteristics that have been used to achieve effective learning. Future research should aim to demonstrate the translation of learning into the clinical field to produce improved learner outcomes and create improved patient outcomes.



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Original article
peer-reviewed

Exploring Mechanisms for Effective Technology-Enhanced Simulation-based Education in Wilderness Medicine: A Systematic Review


Author Information

Ralph MacKinnon

Department of Paediatric Anaesthesia & North West and North Wales Paediatric Transport Service, Royal Manchester Children's Hospital, UK

Deborah Aitken Corresponding Author

Research and Innovation, Royal Manchester Children's Hospital, UK

Christopher Humphries

Royal Preston Hospital, Preston, UK


Ethics Statement and Conflict of Interest Disclosures

Human subjects: All authors have confirmed that this study did not involve human participants or tissue. Animal subjects: All authors have confirmed that this study did not involve animal subjects or tissue. Conflicts of interest: In compliance with the ICMJE uniform disclosure form, all authors declare the following: Payment/services info: All authors have declared that no financial support was received from any organization for the submitted work. Financial relationships: All authors have declared that they have no financial relationships at present or within the previous three years with any organizations that might have an interest in the submitted work. Other relationships: One of the authors (CH) runs his own wilderness medicine training company.

Acknowledgements

The authors would like to acknowledge the contribution of Colette King, the now retired librarian at Central Manchester Foundation Trust, UK, for assistance with the search strategy and acquisition of articles. One of the authors (RM) sustained a significant head injury, resulting in a delay in publication, and would like to voice his appreciation to the editorial team for their support as he recovered.


Original article
peer-reviewed

Exploring Mechanisms for Effective Technology-Enhanced Simulation-based Education in Wilderness Medicine: A Systematic Review


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Original article
peer-reviewed

Exploring Mechanisms for Effective Technology-Enhanced Simulation-based Education in Wilderness Medicine: A Systematic Review

Ralph MacKinnon">Ralph MacKinnon, Deborah Aitken">Deborah Aitken , Christopher Humphries">Christopher Humphries

  • Author Information
    Ralph MacKinnon

    Department of Paediatric Anaesthesia & North West and North Wales Paediatric Transport Service, Royal Manchester Children's Hospital, UK

    Deborah Aitken Corresponding Author

    Research and Innovation, Royal Manchester Children's Hospital, UK

    Christopher Humphries

    Royal Preston Hospital, Preston, UK


    Ethics Statement and Conflict of Interest Disclosures

    Human subjects: All authors have confirmed that this study did not involve human participants or tissue. Animal subjects: All authors have confirmed that this study did not involve animal subjects or tissue. Conflicts of interest: In compliance with the ICMJE uniform disclosure form, all authors declare the following: Payment/services info: All authors have declared that no financial support was received from any organization for the submitted work. Financial relationships: All authors have declared that they have no financial relationships at present or within the previous three years with any organizations that might have an interest in the submitted work. Other relationships: One of the authors (CH) runs his own wilderness medicine training company.

    Acknowledgements

    The authors would like to acknowledge the contribution of Colette King, the now retired librarian at Central Manchester Foundation Trust, UK, for assistance with the search strategy and acquisition of articles. One of the authors (RM) sustained a significant head injury, resulting in a delay in publication, and would like to voice his appreciation to the editorial team for their support as he recovered.


    Article Information

    Published: December 17, 2015

    DOI

    10.7759/cureus.412

    Cite this article as:

    Mackinnon R, Aitken D, Humphries C (December 17, 2015) Exploring Mechanisms for Effective Technology-Enhanced Simulation-based Education in Wilderness Medicine: A Systematic Review. Cureus 7(12): e412. doi:10.7759/cureus.412

    Publication history

    Received by Cureus: September 24, 2015
    Peer review began: October 15, 2015
    Peer review concluded: December 15, 2015
    Published: December 17, 2015

    Copyright

    © Copyright 2015
    MacKinnon et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License CC-BY 3.0., which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

    License

    This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Abstract

Background: Technology-enhanced simulation is well-established in healthcare teaching curricula, including those regarding wilderness medicine. Compellingly, the evidence base for the value of this educational modality to improve learner competencies and patient outcomes are increasing.

Aims: The aim was to systematically review the characteristics of technology-enhanced simulation presented in the wilderness medicine literature to date. Then, the secondary aim was to explore how this technology has been used and if the use of this technology has been associated with improved learner or patient outcomes.

Methods: EMBASE and MEDLINE were systematically searched from 1946 to 2014, for articles on the provision of technology-enhanced simulation to teach wilderness medicine. Working independently, the team evaluated the information on the criteria of learners, setting, instructional design, content, and outcomes.

Results: From a pool of 37 articles, 11 publications were eligible for systematic review. The majority of learners in the included publications were medical students, settings included both indoors and outdoors, and the main focus clinical content was initial trauma management with some including leadership skills. The most prevalent instructional design components were clinical variation and cognitive interactivity, with learner satisfaction as the main outcome.

Conclusions: The results confirm that the current provision of wilderness medicine utilizing technology-enhanced simulation is aligned with instructional design characteristics that have been used to achieve effective learning. Future research should aim to demonstrate the translation of learning into the clinical field to produce improved learner outcomes and create improved patient outcomes.



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Ralph MacKinnon

Department of Paediatric Anaesthesia & North West and North Wales Paediatric Transport Service, Royal Manchester Children's Hospital, UK

Deborah Aitken

Research and Innovation, Royal Manchester Children's Hospital, UK

For correspondence:
dhaitken@gmail.com

Christopher Humphries

Royal Preston Hospital, Preston, UK

Ralph MacKinnon

Department of Paediatric Anaesthesia & North West and North Wales Paediatric Transport Service, Royal Manchester Children's Hospital, UK

Deborah Aitken

Research and Innovation, Royal Manchester Children's Hospital, UK

For correspondence:
dhaitken@gmail.com

Christopher Humphries

Royal Preston Hospital, Preston, UK