Development of an interprofessional ECMO education curriculum for registered nurse and respiratory therapist maintained ECMO at Providence Healthcare




Jerrett, Cara Christine

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As a result of the national and international shortage of cardiovascular perfusionists, members of the critical care program at Providence Healthcare want to pursue the implementation of an interprofessional extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) education program for registered nurses (RNs) and respiratory therapists (RTs). My original intent in this project was to develop the curriculum for the in-house interprofessional ECMO program for RNs and RTs based upon the vision of the stakeholders. However, due to findings in the curriculum development process, my aim changed to that of developing a curriculum with another facility that currently conducts interprofessional ECMO education. The goal for the curriculum remained unchanged—for RNs and RTs to participate in and successfully complete the ECMO education so that they could develop the cognitive, affective, and psychomotor skills needed to collaboratively, safely, and competently maintain ECMO on adult patients in the intensive care unit (ICU). Achieving this goal would lessen the effects of the perfusionist shortage, meet the desire for interprofessional education in the ICU, strengthen collaboration, and possibly create the capacity to expand services provided to patients including bridging to transplantation. In this paper, I outline the process I followed in developing the curriculum. I clearly identify the problem, perform a general and targeted needs assessment, establish goals and objectives, identify philosophical and theoretical iv underpinnings, and develop a plan for implementation. Unfortunately, due to significant unresolved social and political issues, at this time, implementation of the curriculum is not feasible.



ECMO, education curriculum, registered nurse, respiratory therapist, interprofessional extracorporeal membrane oxygenation