Efficacy of a single-day task trainer–based extracorporeal membrane oxygenation training course

Joseph K. Maddry, R. Madelaine Paredes, Timur Abdurashidov, William T. Davis, Joni A. Paciocco, Maria Castaneda, Allyson A. Araña, Crystal A. Perez, Darren S. Baldwin, Dylan C. Rodriguez, Kimberly L. Medellin, Patrick Ng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) is an advanced medical technology used to treat respiratory and heart failure. The coronavirus pandemic has resulted in significantly more ECMO patients worldwide. However, the number of hospitals with ECMO capabilities and ECMO-trained staff are limited. Training of personnel in ECMO could supplement this demand. Objective: To evaluate our previously developed ECMO course using a task trainer–based training, as opposed to an existing live tissue–training model, and determine if such a program was adequate and could be expanded to other facilities. Methods: Seventeen teams, each consisting of a physician and nurse, underwent a 5 hour accelerated ECMO course in which they watched prerecorded ECMO training lectures, primed circuit, cannulated, initiated ECMO, and corrected common complications. Training success was evaluated via knowledge and confidence assessments and observation of each team attempting to initiate ECMO while troubleshooting complications on a Yorkshire swine. Results: Seventeen teams successfully completed the course. Sixteen teams (94%, 95% CI = 71%–100%) successfully placed the swine on veno-arterial ECMO. Of those 16 teams, 15 successfully transitioned to veno-arterial–venous ECMO. The knowledge assessments and confidence levels of physicians and nurses increased by 24.3% from pretest (mean of 65.3%, SD 14.4%) to posttest (mean of 89.6%, SD 10.3%), p < 0.0001. Conclusions: An abbreviated one day lecture and hands-on task trainer–based ECMO course resulted in a high rate of successful skill demonstration and improvement of physicians' and nurses' knowledge assessments and confidence levels, similar to our previous live tissue training program.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere10806
JournalAEM Education and Training
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2022
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Emergency
  • Education
  • Emergency Medicine


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