Flexing training facilities to meet peaks of demand for NHS

With the various IT initiatives being introduced through the NHS, there is one common factor underpinning successful implementation; the ability to successfully train NHS staff in an effective, timely, cost efficient manner.

Whilst there have been some successes with the use of e-learning in the NHS, it is likely a great deal of training delivered for systems such as electronic care records, will be through instructor led training (ILT).

All local service providers are committed to programmes of ‘Train the Trainer’, as part of their contractual agreements. Many trusts have already identified - and started - to develop the internal staff for training delivery.

Challenges

However, one of the challenges facing trusts is the lack of suitable training venues.

It is acknowledged there are limited appropriate training facilities in many NHS trusts to enable staff to use new IT systems.

With the responsibility for training staff in new technologies and applications resting with trusts, mobile training units can form an important resource to provide additional facilities that can be called upon when needed. Using these units will help to minimise disruption to frontline staff and is a cost-effective solution to meet training needs.

Among the problems often faced when developing training plans to support implementation is the ability to complete the training close to the ‘go live’ date. To ensure that learning is reinforced and put into practice.

Usually, this means the training plan must be compressed to no more than eight to 10 weeks prior to the live date. This puts enormous strain on existing trust IT training suites where resources are already highly utilised.