Education Needs of Australian Flight Nurses

Jodie Martin, Koshila Kumar

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Abstract

    Objective: Flight nurses work in physically challenging environments, often alone, in the confines of moving aircraft at altitudes with limited resources. Although this challenging environment has been previously described, there are no Australian studies that outline flight nurses’ learning needs and the education activities they find useful in learning about their role. Methods: This was a qualitative exploratory study using one-on-one interviews with 8 currently practicing flight nurses from 1 air medical retrieval organization. Data were analyzed thematically. Results: Four key themes emerged: flight nurses need to learn how to work autonomously in a resource-constrained air medical environment, flight nurses need to learn how to develop physical and mental resilience to work in the air medical environment, flight nurses need to learn nontechnical skills such as flexibility and adaptability, and flight nurses learn how to perform in their role through formal and informal learning strategies. Conclusion: Existing clinical knowledge aids decision making as a sole practitioner in the resource-limited air medical environment. Previously unreported nontechnical skills of mental resilience, adaptability, and flexibility were highlighted. Flight nurses learn how to prepare for their role through simulation, case reviews, in situ observation through buddy flights, and a range of socially situated learning activities.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)178–182
    Number of pages5
    JournalAir Medical Journal
    Volume39
    Issue number3
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2020

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