BACKGROUND: During hospital relocations, it is important to support healthcare professionals becoming familiar with new settings. Simulation-based training seems promising and in situ simulation has been suggested as a beneficial educational tool to prepare healthcare professionals for relocation. This study aimed to investigate the impact of a simulation-based training intervention on health professionals´ readiness to work in their new environment, as well as investigate sick leave before and after relocation.
METHODS: The study was a controlled intervention study implemented at a university hospital in Denmark. Simulation was used to prepare employees for workflows prior to relocation. Before relocation, 1199 healthcare professionals participated in the in situ simulation-based training program. Questionnaires on readiness to perform were distributed to participants at pre-, post-, and follow-up (6 months) measurement. In addition, data on participants' sick leave was gathered from a business intelligence portal. To compare dependent and independent groups, paired and unpaired t tests were performed on mean score of readiness to perform and sick leave.
RESULTS: Compared to the control group, healthcare professionals participating in the intervention felt significantly more ready to work in a new hospital environment. As a measure of psychological wellbeing, register data indicated no difference in sick leave, when comparing intervention and control groups before and after participating in the in situ simulation-based training program.
CONCLUSIONS: Healthcare professionals felt significantly more ready to work in a new environment, after participating in the in situ simulation-based training program, indicating that the intervention supported healthcare professionals during relocations. This may mitigate feelings of uncertainty; however, further research is needed to explore such effects.
TRIAL REGISTRATION: The study was approved by The Regional Ethics Committee (no. 1-16-02-222-22).