EDDIE and Mask-Ed - a perfect match for training in aged care

Published:21 February 2017

CQUni Nursing educators who are part of the EDDIE research team recently provided clinical assessment training for nursing staff at Maryborough using Mask-Ed (KRS Simulation). BOTTOM IMAGE: L-R Registered Nurse Emily Toy, Associate Professor Trudy Dwyer and Clinical Nurse (RN) Kathleen Hawken.

When a resident of an aged care facility experiences chest pain they are often transferred to hospital for evaluation.

One reason is because many facilities do not have electrocardiogram (ECG) machines which are used to identify if the pain is cardiac-related.

Yaralla Place, a residential aged care facility operated by PresCare in Maryborough, has added an ECG machine in conjunction with the introduction of the EDDIE program, which stands for Early Detection of Deterioration in the Elderly.

The program, developed by PresCare, supports staff with resources and training in early detection and response to deteriorating health to help prevent hospitalisation. A team from CQUniversity is evaluating the implementation of the program.

Nursing educators who are part of the research team from CQUniversity - Associate Professor Trudy Dwyer, Professor Kerry Reid-Searl and Barbara O’Neill - recently provided clinical assessment training for nursing staff at Maryborough using Mask-Ed (KRS Simulation).

Mask-Ed is a high-fidelity simulation technique which involves the use of silicone props, including masks, torsos, hands and feet. The props are worn by an informed educator, who in this recent case was Professor Reid-Searl, the developer of Mask-Ed.

The Mask-Ed character, named Eddie Perkins, was created especially for use in training staff as part of the EDDIE program.

On this recent visit, Eddie Perkins was the focus of a case study exercise where staff learned how to use decision-making tools and equipment that had been introduced as part of the program to detect and respond to signs of deteriorating health.

Associate Professor Dwyer used her skills as a critical care nurse and educator to review basic ECG strip interpretation with the staff.

The EDDIE project is a collaborative project between PresCare and CQUniversity funded by the Australian Centre for Health Services Innovation (AusHSI).

Professor Lynne Parkinson, a member of the CQUniversity research team, says the aim of the project is to evaluate the EDDIE program’s implementation and associated costs in order to develop an implementation protocol that can be utilised by other residential aged care facilities wanting to reduce emergency hospital transfers of residents.

The Manager Service Improvement & Innovation at PresCare, Dee Jeffrey says the program resulted in a significant reduction in hospital transfers when piloted at PresCare’s Rockhampton facility.