Cardiothoracic anaesthesia is a complex and highly specific area within anaesthesia that can initially be overwhelming for new trainees. Furthermore elements of the Final FRCA examination often focus on this broad topic. We wished to create an online lecture series that was freely accessible and aligned to the RCOA anaesthetic curriculum in order to help ease trainees into the important but potentially daunting world of cardiothoracic anaesthesia.
A team of eleven trainees and one perfusionist volunteered to produce content for the cardiothoracic anaesthesia e-learning lecture series. The educational content was carefully aligned to the RCOA and Final FRCA exam syllabus and in total 17 lectures were written. Each lecture was reviewed and edited by a consultant cardiothoracic anaesthetist before being narrated and recorded using “Panopto” software. Video lectures were hosted on the Welsh School of Anaesthesia website(1) allowing trainees to freely access the educational content at a time, place and pace that suits them.
Currently, 13 of the 17 lectures have been produced and are available to watch online (final 4 available soon). Website analytics show that in their first ‘live’ month, each video has been viewed or downloaded up to 26 times, delivering up to 3 hours of educational content. We surveyed current trainees undertaking their cardiothoracic anaesthesia module; trainees found the lecture series “extremely helpful” for both practical anaesthesia and finals revision. All trainees would recommend these to a colleague.
The production of an online series of lectures within cardiothoracic anaesthesia was planned to make learning in this area more convenient, accessible and manageable(2) with a focus on the specifics of the intermediate level RCOA curriculum. From the feedback received, we have produced a highly useful tool that will used as an educational resource over the years to come. Engagement with the lecture series will continue to be monitored and the content will be updated on a 5 yearly basis to ensure it remains relevant and up-to-date. We hope that by making this series so accessible it has the potential to be of great use to anaesthetic trainees not just in the Wales deanery but also over the whole of the UK.
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