Journal: Journal of Palliative Medicine Author: Brock, K.E., Cohen, H.J., Sourkes, B.M., Good, J.J. & Halamek, L.P. Publication Date: Apr 2017 Volume Number: Epub ahead Issue: of print
Description: Pediatric fellows receive little palliative care (PC) education and have few opportunities to practice communication skills.

In this pilot study, we assessed (1) the relative effectiveness of simulation-based versus didactic education, (2) communication skill retention, and (3) effect on PC consultation rates.

Thirty-five pediatric fellows in cardiology, critical care, hematology/oncology, and neonatology at two institutions enrolled: 17 in the intervention (simulation-based) group (single institution) and 18 in the control (didactic education) group (second institution). Intervention group participants participated in a two-day program over three months (three simulations and videotaped PC panel). Control group participants received written education designed to be similar in content and time.

(1) Self-assessment questionnaires were completed at baseline, post-intervention and three months; mean between-group differences for each outcome measure were assessed. (2) External reviewers rated simulation-group encounters on nine communication domains. Within-group changes over time were assessed. (3) The simulation-based site's PC consultations were compared in the six months pre- and post-intervention.
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