Using scenario-based elearning to enhance patient experience

scenario-based eLearning healthcare

Patient experience, what is it? Can it be pinpointed to occur at one specific point in the timeline of care? No. A patient’s experience starts from the very moment they first make contact with the healthcare system, right through to their last. This means that a variety of healthcare professionals have a part to play in ensuring patients receive excellent health and social care services, alongside safe and practical care.

Sadly, negative patient experiences occur every day and it’s often because staff aren’t taught about the importance of clinical empathy. Hundreds of studies around patient experience have shown that clinical empathy is associated with better patient outcomes, but how can healthcare professionals begin to practice this?

The first step is to learn how to recognise and adapt to the thoughts, feelings and behaviours of each individual patient.

For one to be clinically empathetic, one needs to understand patient attitudes, preferences and individual circumstances. For healthcare professionals to do this, they first need to recognise that patients are more than just the same disease or illness, and in fact should be treated on a case-by-case basis. Differences in family and work situations, financial circumstances, knowledge and emotional reactions will all effect how a patient responds to care, and so what works for one with the same disease, might not work for the other. This is where scenario-based eLearning fits in.

What is scenario-based eLearning?

Scenario-based eLearning is a type of learning that immerses learners in real life learning experiences through simulations or scenarios, allowing them to develop skills that can be applied to a variety of different situations in the future.

True to life simulations and scenarios have been shown to improve training outcomes and not only allow the learner to understand how to better cope in real life situations, but it also puts them at the centre of the learning journey.

Bringing scenario-based eLearning to life with personas?

Here at Day One Technologies, our scenario-based eLearning programs use data which has been fed back from patients, customers, staff, and sometimes other data sources, to create theoretical situations. To bring these situations to life we create personas which represent the people in the scenario we’re creating the eLearning for. This is particularly relevant in healthcare as putting the persona of the patient is vital to help understanding and develop empathy.

Personas enable learners to practise the exact tasks that their patient-facing role requires and can be used in healthcare to educate learners about the important of keeping patient experience goals and objectives in mind.

Presenting multiple, real-life situations and patients to learners will help them to become indispensable when they need to talk to or deal with real patients. Plus, it’s a great way to challenge learners without the risk (and cost) of dealing with real patients before they’re really ready.

By introducing personas in scenario-based eLearning, healthcare professionals can learn how to interact with multiple patient types such as those who are unfamiliar with a specific form of care, those who may fear what their future holds and those who are reluctant to receive treatment etc.

As a result, by creating eLearning programs that incorporate personas, we are allowing organisations to teach healthcare professionals how to be clinically empathetic, thus enhancing patient experience.

Tried and tested – BOC Breathing Life into Oxygen Therapy Training

scenario-based eLearning healthcare

BOC is one of the leading providers of home oxygen to care homes in the UK. Supporting the use of home oxygen is one of many responsibilities the staff of these care homes have to address when caring for their residents. If staff are not properly trained in the safety risks and how to mitigate them, they can put lives at risk.

BOC approached Day One with a mass of dense information about home oxygen therapy and asked us to transform it into a course that would provide care home staff the knowledge to ensure that their residents can safely and comfortably use their oxygen.

Given the mass amount of data, we decided on a scenario-based approach deploying personas to bring the content to life and make it relevant to our learners, and so “Anita” was born. She acts as a personification of our target learner, taking them through a series of real-life scenarios with her patients Julie, Doug, Sheila and Martin, each of whom have their own set of requirements.

We streamlined the information to remove anything that wasn’t relevant to the learner’s role, and restructured the remaining content into seven modules, each with a clear focus. The safety-related content was originally spread throughout the source material, so we brought it all together and reframed it around what the learner would actually need to do to keep their residents safe.

Why not take a look at the outcomes and feedback here:


Scenario based learning in healthcare

Health & Patient Care Scenarios for Learning

Numerous studies have shown that true to life learning experiences, such as simulations and scenarios, are the most effective for developing work-specific skills. Scenario based learning is a framework where the learning experience is hung around a realistic situation or story.

Continue Reading