Game on as new training method saves Liverpool NHS 40,000 hours

Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (LUHFT) has teamed up with tech innovator Attensi to create game-changing IT training, saving staff thousands of hours to dedicate to patient care.

LUHFT worked with Attensi to create a training simulations app to accelerate learning of new IT systems. Clinical staff training within the NHS has traditionally added strain to two areas – time and resource. Thanks to the app, all 4,000 staff completed the training within three weeks, before the new systems went live.

Many Trusts, including LUHFT, have relied on classroom training, where removing staff from the frontline was problematic and costly. However, having a scalable, easy-to-access, on-demand training solution has saved LUHFT over 40,000 staff hours.Jacqui Cooper, CNIO at the time, said: “Training that’s effective and engaging is challenging under normal circumstances. With a global pandemic that rendered classroom learning impossible for a period of time, our challenge was ‘how do we train with real impact, in a way that genuinely prepares clinical staff to confidently use IT systems in a clinical setting?’ This is where Attensi helped us, accelerating the NHS’s approach to training tenfold.”In a survey of LUHFT staff who completed the training, over 90 per cent said they could apply their new skills to their daily work, while average knowledge scores amongst trainees increased from 31 per cent to 93 per cent.

Attensi helped LUHFT to level up its training via a bespoke game-based training app which used a unique blend of psychology, technology, and gaming to enable staff to complete training in a video game-style setting, making training more enjoyable and more efficient. The app replicates the environment of an NHS hospital, setting the scene for training scenarios that staff could encounter in their day-to-day work.

Staff build confidence by working through the scenarios and completing each training module to achieve their certification. Teams can even compete against one another to reach the top of the leaderboard, encouraging friendly competition amongst colleagues.

Jonathan Moffett, NHS Sector Lead at Attensi, said: “The impact of this new approach to training for the NHS has been a game changer for the service. Time is more crucial than ever in a hospital setting where patient care and responsiveness are top priorities. This formed the brief for the training game, which has condensed the amount of time staff need to dedicate to training while dialling up the impact the training has.

Cooper said: “The app-based video game-style model really is transformational for the NHS. It has allowed us to be creative with the way we use our resource. Keeping staff patient-facing is the number one priority for us, and it’s what they want too – spending time with their patients. The effectiveness of the Attensi app has streamlined time and increased knowledge around the new systems. It’s a win-win.”

“Traditional classroom learning, delivered by an IT trainer to clinical staff using digital systems in a patient care setting, often lacks one vital component – clinical context. That’s not something an IT trainer is equipped to provide. After some training on functionality, the clinical staff will then have to use their digital systems in real patient care settings and discover the clinical context for themselves – opening them up to making mistakes.

“Mistakes in learning are never the problem; behavioural psychology tells us that’s how people learn and learn well. Of course, mistakes in real patient care settings can have significant negative consequences. The app-based training gave this clinical context in a truly relatable way as part of the training process – not after, setting staff up for success.”


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