Hyper-realistic, team-centered fleet surgical team training provides sustained improvements in performance

Tuan N. Hoang, Jeff Kang, Kris Siriratsivawong, Anthony LaPorta, Amber Heck, Jessica Ferraro, Douglas Robinson, Jonathan Walsh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Objective The high-stress, fast-paced environment of combat casualty care relies on effective teamwork and communication which translates into quality patient care. A training course was developed for U.S. Navy Fleet Surgical Teams to address these aspects of patient care by emphasizing efficiency and appropriate patient care. An effective training course provides knowledge and skills to pass the course evaluation and sustain the knowledge and skills acquired over time. Design The course included classroom didactic hours, and hands-on simulation sessions. A pretest was administered before the course, a posttest upon completion, and a sustainment test 5 months following course completion. The evaluation process measured changes in patient time to disposition and critical errors made during patient care. Setting Naval Base San Diego, with resuscitation and surgical simulations carried out within the shipboard medical spaces. Participants United States Navy medical personnel including physicians of various specialties, corpsmen, nurses, and nurse anesthetists deploying aboard ships. Results Time to disposition improved significantly, 11 ± 3 minutes, from pretest to posttest, and critical errors improved by 4 ± 1 errors per encounter. From posttest to sustainment test, time to disposition increased by 3 ± 1, and critical errors decreased by 1 ± 1. Conclusions This course showed value in improving teamwork and communication skills of participants, immediately upon completion of the course, and after 5 months had passed. Therefore, with ongoing sustainment activities within 6 months, this course can substantially improve trauma care provided by shipboard deployed Navy medical personnel to wounded service members.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)668-674
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Surgical Education
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2016


  • combat casualty care
  • Fleet Surgical Team Shipboard Surgical Trauma Training Course
  • human-worn partial-task surgical simulator
  • improving teamwork and efficiency in trauma surgery
  • sustainment training


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