Exploring the importance of learning biosciences as a way of developing safe practice in Operating Department Practice

Wordsworth, Stephen and Abbott, Hannah and Dobbins, Kerry and Fell, Patricia (2016) Exploring the importance of learning biosciences as a way of developing safe practice in Operating Department Practice. Journal of Pedagogic Development, 6 (2). pp. 65-76. ISSN 2047-3257

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Abstract

This paper explores the development of bioscience knowledge in the pre-registration Operating Department Practice (ODP) curriculum. The context in which ODPs practice has changed significantly due to a number of factors, including the changing nature of disease and the resulting advances in treatment, and hence the professional role and the associated bioscience knowledge requirements have also changed to meet these needs. This research therefore explores the student experience of bioscience learning and the impact upon perioperative care delivery. This study adopted a mixed methods, quantitative and qualitative, approach where phase one collected predominantly quantitative data via a questionnaire; and phase two explored the themes identified from the questionnaire via a focus group. The study participants were all final year pre-registration students studying the Diploma in Higher Education (DipHE) in Operating Department Practice (ODP) at Birmingham City University. This research has shown that majority (93%) of ODP students recognise the importance of biosciences as part of their professional role and were able to apply this to the different roles undertaken by the ODP; for example the administration of prescribed medication in the post-anaesthetic care unit and the understanding of the surgical intervention whilst in the scrubbed role. Students identified that an understanding of biosciences was essential for safe care delivery but also commented that this understanding allowed the provision of individualised, empathetic care, thus demonstrating a link between biosciences and the wider concepts of perioperative care. This study also explored the location of bioscience learning and the majority of students (63%) felt that principle acquisition of bioscience knowledge was via university teaching rather than on placement. Students did however identify that mentors and other clinical staff supported the application of bioscience knowledge during their clinical placements and hence we believe that this presents an area of further research. This small-scale study has demonstrated that ODP students value the importance of bioscience as part of their professional education and particularly the university based teaching to inform this. Our findings have supported the research from other health professions, which has demonstrated the relationship between bioscience knowledge and the delivery of safe, effective patient care. We believe that these findings, especially those which demonstrate a disconnect between theory and practice learning, suggest that there is a need to review the philosophy which underpins the national curriculum for ODPs.

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: operating department practice, biosciences, patient safety
Faculty: Faculty of Health, Social Care & Education (for research post September 2011)
Depositing User: Unnamed user with email stephen.wordsworth@anglia.ac.uk
Date Deposited: 11 Nov 2016 14:53
Last Modified: 21 Feb 2019 12:52
URI: http://arro.anglia.ac.uk/id/eprint/701076

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