Late last month in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, a local nurse caused a few
jaws to drop at a CPR skills test station.
Humboldt General Hospital Chief Flight Nurse Becky Tisue was attending
the Emergency Nurses Association conference when she stopped by the station
for the assessment. Usually, because CPR skills tests are administered
every two years, participants can be a bit rusty on their initial attempts—but
Tisue scored 97 percent on her first try.
“That was a great testimonial to us of the power of RQI,” said
HGH Nurse Educator Tina Wilson. “The conference people who were
presenting the station said they have never had anyone pass with such
a high score on the first attempt.”
Humboldt General Hospital installed the Resuscitation Quality Improvement
or RQI program last year to provide staff members with the opportunity
to test their CPR skills on a quarterly rather than a bi-annual basis.
“The premise is simple,” said Wilson. “Practice is the
greatest teacher, so the more our staff members practice, the more ready
they are in the event of a true resuscitation emergency.”
Just last week Humboldt General Hospital was recognized for its partnership
with the American Heart Association and Laerdal, which manufacturers the
equipment for the AMA’s RQI program.
Adreon Fenderson, RQI Partners Impact Manager, presented Wilson with an
award recognizing HGH’s leadership in the RQI training. Wilson said
HGH actually holds the distinction of being the first hospital in Nevada
to acquire the training module.
According to Wilson, Tisue’s experience is just one example of the
RQI system’s effectiveness.
“Most of our medical staff do not perform CPR as a normal part of
their daily practice,” said Wilson, “so CPR compression and
ventilation skills normally degrade from lack of use and practice—and
so does the overall effectiveness of CPR.”
“As the quality of CPR degrades,” added Wilson, “this
can literally become a matter of life or death for our patients.”
However, Tisue’s experience shows that brief and regular practice
in CPR leads to better skills. The RQI program presents realistic patient
cases through a mobile simulation station that tests participants’
“This low-dose, high-frequency approach really does help healthcare
providers retain their CPR skills,” said Wilson.
In fact, with RQI, providers do not “renew” their course completion
cards; they are certified indefinitely. What’s more, each individual’s
performance is documented through the system in an effort to track individual
“This has completely changed the way our staff members approach CPR,”
said Wilson. “Their confidence and their competence have increased
exponentially—and, of course, our patients are the ones who ultimately
Photo cutline: HGH Nurse Educator Tina Wilson (pictured at right) was instrumental in
bringing the RQI system to Humboldt General Hospital. RQI Partners Impact
Manager Adreon Fenderson (pictured at left) recently presented Wilson
and HGH with a participation award from the American Heart Association
and Laerdal, which manufactures the RQI equipment.