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Leading Medicine Magazine, Vol 7, No 1 - 2013

for testing and certifying surgical teams — anywhere in the world from anywhere in the world — as ready to perform a variety of learned skills on actual patients.” Thanks to MITIE and planned future centers like it, Bass even envisions medical practitioners taking “surgery sabbaticals” where they could “take a break from the OR and upgrade their skills in a safe, effective and manageable fashion.” During the first five years of MITIE, Bass says proudly, the institute has schooled more than 5,000 practicing surgeons and their colleagues across 25 different specialties from nearly every state in the nation and from eight foreign countries. Each successfully trained graduate, she says, proves again and again that MITIE offers something no other system can when it comes to procedural training. “What we do in the operating room is immediate,” Bass says. “There are no doovers. We get one shot at what we do and mistakes cost lives. MITIE gives us the chance to retool, make the most of that one shot and avoid the mistakes. After all, in a virtual learning environment, the only thing that can get hurt is your pride.” n For more information, visit mitietexas.com. Leading Medicine • Volume 7, Number 1 HOUSTON ENDOWMENT COMMIT TED TO MITIE’S SUCCESS As part of its program “to support educational institutions that produce and maximize enduring benefits for the people of the greater Houston area,” the Houston Endowment awarded a $1.3 million grant earlier this year to the Methodist Institute for Technology, Innovation & Education (MITIE). “Developing, maintaining and continuously improving the programs at MITIE isn’t an investment we can make alone,” says Dr. Brian J. Dunkin, medical director of MITIE. “Thanks to the support and commitment of groups such as the Houston Endowment, it’s no longer just a dream to have a sustainable education and research institute focused on the needs of practicing health care professionals.” Dunkin says that the Houston Endowment gift has been used so far to fund two projects “to help MITIE teach best practices better than it currently can and make even more significant impacts on health care.” In the first project, in-depth interviews are being conducted with MITIE stakeholders — both the practicing caregivers for whom the procedurally based educational program is designed and members of other groups that would benefit from better trained surgical teams, such as insurance companies, health care systems (Kaiser Permanente, for example) and federal health care agencies. Input from these interviews, as well as from a conference to be held in February 2013, will assess the program’s strengths and weaknesses and then be used to create a roadmap for growth and improvement. The second funded project, Dunkin says, requires MITIE to prove its value through two pilot demonstrations known as “Train the Trainer.” In one pilot, the staff members will attempt to use a MITIE training program to increase the number of medical practitioners who will learn ultrasound guidance for placing central lines, the intravenous tubes inserted into large vessels for supplying nutrition, delivering chemotherapy and other purposes. “Although this is the state-of-the-art method, surgeons aren’t using it as much as they should,” Dunkin explains. “Our hope is that by making our trainees skilled in the practice, they’ll encourage others to learn and use it.” Another pilot hopes to achieve a similar outcome for another best practice, laparoscopic colectomy (described in the main article about MITIE). “Although data show that laparoscopy gives better results than traditional colon cancer surgery, only about 20 percent of surgeons use the technique,” Dunkin notes. “We want to train surgeons to be proficient in it and then support them when they go back to teach others at their institutions — what we refer to as a halo effect.” Dunkin says that MITIE plans to conduct the first training in both pilots in the first quarter of 2013. n 53 i n a d d i t i o n


Leading Medicine Magazine, Vol 7, No 1 - 2013
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