Pilot study to teach residents about EMS scope of practice through reverse role simulations

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Sylvia Owusu-Ansah
Kyle A Schmucker
Ashley Keilman
Christine Aspiotes
Natan Cramer


Objective: To improve emergency physician trainee understanding of Emergency Medical Services´ (EMS) scope of practice, and physician confidence in performing EMS skills by conducting a simulation role reversal workshop. Methods: EMS clinicians and physicians created and facilitated a role-reversal workshop for seven pediatric emergency medicine (PEM) fellows designed to emphasize scope of practice of EMS clinicians using basic life support (BLS) and advanced life support (ALS) skills. Fellows roleplayed using BLS or ALS skills in three different case scenarios. Medication preparation and delivery were assessed. Pre, post, and retention surveys (provided at 1 month post-intervention) were performed to assess scope of practice knowledge, and the EMS skill set confidence of the fellows. Results: Fellows reported the curriculum had an impact on their understanding of EMS scope of practice. Confidence in differentiating ALS and BLS scope of practice improved as did the subjective understanding of local EMS protocols. The confidence in preparing and administering multiple types of medications (i.e., intramuscular epinephrine administration, nebulized medication preparation) significantly improved as well (p<0.016 with Bonferroni adjustment). Conclusion: Given improved confidence scoring in understanding EMS scope of practice and medication administration, role reversal methodology may offer intangible affective and psychomotor benefits for emergency medicine trainees by generating a sense of a “lived-experience” when role-playing EMS skill sets. The workshop may serve as a model to use in teaching pre-hospital scope of practice and generating interprofessional understanding for physician trainees. 


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Owusu-Ansah, S., Schmucker, K. A., Keilman, A., Aspiotes, C., & Cramer, N. (2024). Pilot study to teach residents about EMS scope of practice through reverse role simulations. Education for Health, 37(1), 86–94. https://doi.org/10.62694/efh.2024.29
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