a survey of former Advanced Life Support course participants' clinical experiences
BACKGROUND: This study explored individual, team, and setting factors associated with the quality of management of in-hospital emergency situations experienced by former Advanced Life Support (ALS) course participants. METHODS: This study was a survey of former ALS course participants' long-term experience of management of in-hospital, emergency situations. The survey was carried out in 2012 in Denmark and Norway. RESULTS: A questionnaire was send to 526 potential responders and (281/479 × 100) 58.7% responded. The results demonstrated that 75% of the emergency situations were perceived as "managed well". In general, the responders' confidence in being ALS providers was high, mean 4.3 (SD 0.8), scale 1-5. Significant differences between the perceived "well" and "not well" managed situations were found for all questions, p<0.001. The largest differences related to perception of co-workers' ability to apply ALS principles, the team atmosphere and communication. Responders' ratings of quality of management of emergency situations increased with intensity of setting. However, the 'clinical setting' was rated significantly lower as attributor to ability to apply ALS principles compared to 'co-workers familiarity with ALS principles', 'own confidence as ALS-provider' and 'own social/inter-personal skills'. CONCLUSION: The results of this survey emphasise that ALS providers' perceived ability to apply ALS skills were substantially affected by teamwork skills and co-workers' skills. Team related factors associated with successful outcome were related to clear role distribution, clear inter-personal communication and attentive listening, as well as respectful behaviour and positive team atmosphere. Although intensity of setting was attributed to ability to apply ALS principles, this did not affect management of emergency situations to the same extent as individual and team factors.