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Beyond SURGE: The importance of upskilling and staying prepared

Beyond SURGE: The importance of upskilling and sta
Photo: Critical Care Nursing
On the 2nd April 2020, during a National press conference, Minister Hunt acknowledged the need to build capacity to meet the demands for ICU care should we experience a COVID-19 surge.

This was on the day when news headlines reported the death toll rising to 2,300 in the UK and 4,000 in the US with fears growing that the US toll could rise as high as 200,000.

In response to this and with the support of Federal Government sponsored places, Critical Care Education Services (CCES), part of the Medcast group, developed the SURGE (Specialised Upskilling and RN Growth through Education) program to upskill Australia’s nursing workforce and meet the projected demands for nurses capable of providing care to ICU patients.

The program included a High Dependency (HDU) Course and a Critical Care Nursing (CCN) Course.
“A big thankyou to Medcast for offering this course during the COVID crisis.  It provided a timely distraction whilst improving knowledge and decreasing anxiety about redeployment”
- Cherie, SURGE participant



Critical Care Education

The program provided education specific to critical care and high dependency nursing and included training on the care of the ventilated patient, haemodynamic monitoring, renal replacement therapies, supporting cardiovascular function and managing shock including inotropes and vasopressor therapies.

“I have started applying the knowledge from this training in my clinical practice & I feel so grateful and more confident”
- Frances, SURGE participant

As we continue to battle with this pandemic, we have seen over 4 million people worldwide are reported to have lost their lives to COVID-19.  While our numbers in Australia remain low, there is growing concern with the rapid transmission of the Delta variant.

Developing the nursing workforce

Now more than ever, we all recognise the need to maintain and develop Australia’s critical care workforce.

SURGE program participants continue to have access to updated content, and a new Critical Bytes series has been developed to provide up to date information on critical care nursing (including a COVID specific update).

Ongoing upskilling of the critical care workforce continues through the CCN, HDU and Anaesthetics and Recovery programs that offer a comprehensive range of education in-line with hospital or post graduate certificates.

This suite of courses would benefit graduate and novice nurses starting out in the critical care environment, or those nurses looking to develop their clinical knowledge and work towards a post graduate qualification.

“Undertaking this course was very helpful in applying this advanced knowledge to my current practice as an Anaesthetic Nurse and has given me the confidence to pursue a career in ICU”
- Briarne, SURGE participant

The benefits of Online Learning

Online learning is a growing area in healthcare where traditionally education has been delivered on-site, requiring the participant to be able to attend in lieu of providing clinical care and frequently this means replacing clinical hours.

Online learning offers the benefit of 24 hour access, making it perfect for the shiftworker.

“I love learning online… we can go back over the tutorial when we are unsure of something… I would highly recommend this course to others”
- Susan, SURGE CCN participant

Some people are worried about missing the interaction with online learning, but with the incorporation of polls during live webinars, animations, interactive drawings, and community discussion pages, online programs can provide a wide variety of interactive learning opportunities.

Beyond meeting your CPD requirements

Whether your needs range from a single course for individuals or teams, to a scalable, bespoke learning and development program, we’ve proven that healthcare education can be made easier, smarter and more effective.

In addition to courses specific to resuscitation and clinical deterioration, critical care and peri-operative care, we also host free webinars, podcasts and quick snippets of education - all aimed at providing the latest updates to ensure preparedness with best practice.

In the famous words of Benjamin Franklin, “by failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.”

You can contact CCES & Medcast to discuss your accreditation and compliance requirements, bespoke learning opportunities or individual CPD here.

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