OPEN Research Support

PhD student
Lotte Abildgren
Department of Anaestisiology and Intensive Care, Odense University Hospital

Projekt styring
Projekt status    Sampling ongoing
Data indsamlingsdatoer
Start 01.08.2018  
Slut 28.02.2025  

SimLEARN: Reducing adverse events through transfer of non-technical skills

Short summary

Background: Adverse events often occur due to health personnel's insufficient non-technical skills. However, prevention of these events is addressed by providing the healthcare personnel with theoretical knowledge out of the context on complex clinical practice.

Aim: The development of fundamental, interdisciplinary knowledge on how health personnel transfer non-technical skills from simulation training to performance in clinical practice. To understand how teamwork changes as a consequence of in situ simulation training.

Method: Data of the teams use of non-technical skills before, during and after training are gathered through ethnographic fieldwork from four hospital units, at two different hospitals.


To error is human. Errors occur in the health care system despite the fact that it should not happen. Errors expose patients to hazards and unintended events, complications and even death. Errors often occur in due to health care personnel's ability to use non-technical skills. Non-technical skills are the cognitive and interpersonal skills that underpin effective team work. Estimates are that between 70-80% of healthcare errors (e.g. miscommunication) can be assigned to a breakdown in the personnel's non-technical skills. These skills include among others the interpersonal skills of communication, leadership and followership (being a team member) and cognitive skills of decision making, situation awareness and task management. Non-technical skills are part of the human factors agenda.

However, prevention of errors is continuously pursued by providing the health care personnel with theoretical knowledge out of the context of the complex clinical practice. Similar studies are not available and there is a lack of this kind of knowledge.

This research project provides another perspective and method to address and reduce errors in the health care system. The aims of this study are:

1) To use in situ simulation training of health personnel to develop knowledge on how they learn.

2) To gain knowledge on how health personnel transfer their learning from the simulation training into new competences and working practices in the clinic.

3) To understand how teamwork and medicine administration changes as a consequence of training and if possible

4) to develop a generic method to be used across different departments and hospitals in order to increase patient safety.

Description of the cohort

Healthcare personnel, postgraduated

Data and biological material

Etnografic data: Video, notes, pictures, interviews, demographics

Collaborating researchers and departments

Centre og Human Interactivity, University of Southern Denmark

  • PhD-student Malte Lebahn
  • Professor Sune Vork Steffensen, 

OPEN, Odense University Hospital & University of Southern Denmark

  • Professor Lise Hounsgaard

Anaesthesiology-Intensive Care Unit, Odense University Hospital

  • Professor Palle Toft

Center of Acute Medicine, Aabenraa Hospital, Hospital of Southern Jutland

  • Professor Christian Backer Mogensen