Paediatric respiratory course success

The Trust's largest ever course in paediatric non-invasive ventilation (NIV) has trained 50 consultant, trainees and allied health professionals so they can confidently manage young patients who need NIV to support breathing. 

The whole-day course, organised by Royal Brompton's paediatric respiratory and sleep team, included hands-on workshops, clinical and academic lectures, and a thought-provoking debate on whether with severe cerebral palsy should be started on NIV. 

Course organiser Dr Hui-Leng Tan, consultant in paediatric respiratory and sleep medicine, said: "The number of children requiring NIV has increased exponentially, as a result of better medical care and better survival rates for a number of conditions, so it is really important that district general hospitals know how to look after children who need NIV. 

"We have been running internal courses for some time to train our own staff, and we decided to open one up to external candidates. The day went smoothly and I was really impressed by the feedback we received, especially considering it was the first course we had run." Unlike invasive ventilation, which requires a tracheostomy, NIV uses expertly-fitted masks to deliver positive airway pressure via a ventilator to people who need support with breathing. 

It is commonly used in children with neuromuscular disorders, but can be used to help manage a wide range of conditions including central hypoventilation and obesity hypoventilation. 

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