Title : Teamwork makes the dream work: A multidisciplinary approach to ongoing patient care technician education
One year after opening a new hospital, a lack of continuing education was identified for Patient Care Technicians (PCT) on medical/surgical units. The Nursing Professional Development Practitioner (NPDP) found limited current research specific to PCTs. This inspired the NPDP to create ongoing multidisciplinary education that invests in PCTs as valued team members.
The purpose of this program was to implement ongoing structured education for PCTs. Ongoing education gives PCTs a way to stay current with their skills, knowledge and abilities. Staff nurses assisted in the development and implementation of some of the sessions based upon their unit’s needs. Multidisciplinary involvement allows experts to teach content and provide best practice education.
Basic Procedures for Improvement Opportunities
A qualitative baseline assessment was collected in December 2022. Data was based on self-perceived skill level utilizing a 3-point Likert scale as well as write-in responses. Ongoing structured education began in January 2023 based upon findings. Examples of PCT education provided include critical vital signs, communication, phlebotomy, skin/wound care and transfer training.
Multidisciplinary education is helping bridge the gap and provides ongoing structured education for PCTs. Not all educational sessions had an evaluation, however, one post-survey from the skin/wound care education noted improved skills in 67% of participants. The program has expanded hospital-wide and is now open to all PCTs.
Patient Care Technicians are often an overlooked part of the healthcare team. Lack of research makes it difficult to understand the unique role of a PCT. Skilled PCTs can serve as a bridge between evidence-based practice and best patient outcomes with ongoing, structured multidisciplinary education.
Audience Take Away Notes:
- The audience should be able to take the information from this presentation and use it to empower their nursing staff to make a change. By considering a multidisciplinary approach to ongoing education, nurses can help identify, employe and empower nursing assistants with education that keeps their practice up to date.
- The benefit of utilizing a multidisciplinary team for ongoing education can help to improve education by allowing experts to teach content directly to the student. This type of collaboration between departments encourages a teamwork approach to education.
- Multidisciplinary education is relevant across all healthcare settings and is not limited to nursing assistants, making it idea for training a variety of staff.