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Ultrasound J ; 13(1): 39, 2021 Sep 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1394444


BACKGROUND: Lack of training is currently the most common barrier to implementation of point-of-care ultrasound (POCUS) use in clinical practice, and in-person POCUS continuing medical education (CME) courses have been paramount in improving this training gap. Due to travel restrictions and physical distancing requirements during the COVID-19 pandemic, most in-person POCUS training courses were cancelled. Though tele-ultrasound technology has existed for several years, use of tele-ultrasound technology to deliver hands-on training during a POCUS CME course has not been previously described. METHODS: We conducted a retrospective observational study comparing educational outcomes, course evaluations, and learner and faculty feedback from in-person versus tele-ultrasound POCUS courses. The same POCUS educational curriculum was delivered to learners by the two course formats. Data from the most recent pre-pandemic in-person course were compared to tele-ultrasound courses during the COVID-19 pandemic. RESULTS: Pre- and post-course knowledge test scores of learners from the in-person (n = 88) and tele-ultrasound course (n = 52) were compared. Though mean pre-course knowledge test scores were higher among learners of the tele-ultrasound versus in-person course (78% vs. 71%; p = 0.001), there was no significant difference in the post-course test scores between learners of the two course formats (89% vs. 87%; p = 0.069). Both learners and faculty rated the tele-ultrasound course highly (4.6-5.0 on a 5-point scale) for effectiveness of virtual lectures, tele-ultrasound hands-on scanning sessions, and course administration. Faculty generally expressed less satisfaction with their ability to engage with learners, troubleshoot image acquisition, and provide feedback during the tele-ultrasound course but felt learners completed the tele-ultrasound course with a better basic POCUS skillset. CONCLUSIONS: Compared to a traditional in-person course, tele-ultrasound POCUS CME courses appeared to be as effective for improving POCUS knowledge post-course and fulfilling learning objectives. Our findings can serve as a roadmap for educators seeking guidance on development of a tele-ultrasound POCUS training course whose demand will likely persist beyond the COVID-19 pandemic.

J Ultrasound Med ; 40(9): 1879-1892, 2021 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-956716


OBJECTIVES: To develop a consensus statement on the use of lung ultrasound (LUS) in the assessment of symptomatic general medical inpatients with known or suspected coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). METHODS: Our LUS expert panel consisted of 14 multidisciplinary international experts. Experts voted in 3 rounds on the strength of 26 recommendations as "strong," "weak," or "do not recommend." For recommendations that reached consensus for do not recommend, a fourth round was conducted to determine the strength of those recommendations, with 2 additional recommendations considered. RESULTS: Of the 26 recommendations, experts reached consensus on 6 in the first round, 13 in the second, and 7 in the third. Four recommendations were removed because of redundancy. In the fourth round, experts considered 4 recommendations that reached consensus for do not recommend and 2 additional scenarios; consensus was reached for 4 of these. Our final recommendations consist of 24 consensus statements; for 2 of these, the strength of the recommendations did not reach consensus. CONCLUSIONS: In symptomatic medical inpatients with known or suspected COVID-19, we recommend the use of LUS to: (1) support the diagnosis of pneumonitis but not diagnose COVID-19, (2) rule out concerning ultrasound features, (3) monitor patients with a change in the clinical status, and (4) avoid unnecessary additional imaging for patients whose pretest probability of an alternative or superimposed diagnosis is low. We do not recommend the use of LUS to guide admission and discharge decisions. We do not recommend routine serial LUS in patients without a change in their clinical condition.

COVID-19 , Inpatients , Canada , Consensus , Humans , Lung/diagnostic imaging , SARS-CoV-2