Healthcare Assistants set to benefit from hands-on training

NEW Healthcare Assistants at the Trust are benefiting from an innovative new training package.

A Healthcare Assistant wearing the special ‘low fidelity’ equipment

Practice Development Sisters Louise McGuinness, Sharon Vickers and Debbie McAteer from the Scheduled, Unscheduled Care and Surgical divisions introduced new Healthcare Assistants (HCAs) to new training methods as part of their Trust induction, giving them an opportunity to get a more interactive insight into their new roles.

Staff were introduced to “low fidelity’’ simulation training which provides an insight to life as a patient in hospital by showing staff who provide healthcare what it is like to be a person with restricted movement and highlighting areas of weakness. Low fidelity simulation sees participants wear restrictive clothing or apparatus that highlights how life is for some patients with certain conditions.

Louise McGuinness said: “We want the staff to appreciate the activities of daily life from a view of an elderly patient.

“The simulation kits allow the staff to restrict their senses such as sight, taste, touch and hearing.

“The kits also allow staff to become hunched and we can restrict movement in the hands and feet too which simulates the weakness and movement difficulty in some patients.’’

Twenty members of staff attended from Scheduled and Unscheduled Care divisions and they took part in different tasks including walking, dressing and feeding.

Louise added: “In terms of feeding we were able to replicate a ‘Thick and Easy’ mixture to demonstrate to the new starters how a patient would feel if they had difficulty swallowing.

“We wanted to set this training up as it is much more interactive.

“There are a lot of elderly patients in orthopaedics, so staff need to know how to meet their needs.

“By doing the training staff really empathise with the patients and have a much better understanding of how it would feel to be in hospital.

“The feedback we received was great, all staff enjoyed the session and we are planning to run the training again on more induction sessions as it

develops a stronger understanding of nursing care.’’


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