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Real-time simulations teach staff and students about resuscitation

Primary Angioplasty Live conference 2016
Children from local schools carrying out a simulated resuscitation

14 October 2016 

The 10th annual Primary Angioplasty Live conference took place at Harefield Hospital on 5 October, with over 300 delegates made up of staff and school children attending sessions at the two-day event.

This year’s conference focused on the role of simulation and cutting-edge technology in resuscitation training and heart attack management. Guests were able to enjoy interactive sessions, lectures and question and answer sessions.

The event attracted clinical staff from across the country, including members of the London, East of England and South Central ambulance services. Students from six local schools were invited to attend the second day, which was also open to patients and members of the public.

On the first day, audience members gathered to watch a live-stream from one of the hospital’s catheter laboratories, where Dr Rob Smith, consultant interventional cardiologist and course co-director, led a simulation of a primary angioplasty, using a high-tech mannequin. A primary angioplasty is an emergency treatment for a heart attack, which involves unblocking the arteries using a catheter, small balloon and stent.

Two more simulations followed - one of a primary angioplasty following cardiac arrest and the other of extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) circulatory support.

On the second day, visitors were shown the basics in cardiopulmonary resuscitation, which is used to resuscitate patients who have had a heart attack. The final simulation, carried out by students, was set up outside the hospital to demonstrate the challenges of resuscitation in a public place, and live-relayed to conference hall.

Commenting on the success of the event, Dr Miles Dalby, consultant cardiologist and course director, said: “This year’s focus on interactive sessions and simulated scenarios was a great success and a fitting way to celebrate the course’s 10-year anniversary. 

"Harefield Angioplasty Live has become an immensely popular event for clinical staff across the country and really showcases how the Trust is leading the way in simulation training and treating heart attacks.”  

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