Dear Colleagues, dear Friends,
The European Society of Intensive Care Medicine (ESICM) is reaching out to you to announce that we are to carry out a training programme financed by the European Commission to provide training in Intensive Care across the EU. The training programme, COVID-19 Skills Preparation Course (C19 SPACE), is aimed at healthcare professionals (both nurses and physicians) that do not work regularly in the ICU in case of deployment to look after critically ill patients in anticipation of a second wave of COVID-19. This will create an extra line of defence for ICUs when there is a need for a rapid, temporary significant scale-up of ICU capacity in the face of a pandemic which has already demanded a 30 to 40% increase of ICU beds per 100,000 inhabitants. The programme aims to promote the concept of a ‘healthcare army’ in Europe to fight COVID-19 by giving rapid crash training of a multidisciplinary pool of health care professionals supporting and assisting intensive care units in times of need. The current reality is that significant disparities exist between European countries in relation to the number of ICU beds per 100,000 inhabitants, leaving some countries better prepared than others for a possible second wave of COVID-19. By financing this programme, the European Commission aims to deliver a homogenous training that can be tailored and adapted to local realities ensuring the best possible care can be provided to European citizens. In order to achieve a unified single validated training for the hospitals of the EU, the programme will be carried out until December 2020 in cooperation with the 27 EU Member States and the United Kingdom and will draw on local expertise to train and certify nurses and physicians who are willing to increase their competences in Intensive Care and step up to the front line if necessary.
The training programme will be cost-free to participants. Trainers and participants will receive an Educational Tool Kit in their local language, with innovative resources including realistic immersive learning resources to ensure an unparalleled learning experience. The training will also be adaptable to the participant, taking into consideration any training previously completed in the field. Whereas a common core curriculum has been developed, two specifically tailored training pathways will be offered for nurses and doctors respectively. Participants who successfully complete the training will be awarded an ICU passport certificate with CME and CNE credits. ESICM is coordinating the programme and will provide standardised educational materials in the form of an Intensive Care toolkit which can be adapted to the situation in every Member State. With this programme, the European Commission demonstrates its commitment to support frontline healthcare workers across Europe and to support Member States in their efforts to address the coronavirus pandemic to prepare the response to a possible second wave. We therefore kindly ask you, our friends from other medical disciplines, for your help in promoting participation in the training through your networks to ensure the dissemination of Intensive Care Medicine competences throughout the EU. Combined with the competences of every other medical discipline, we believe this programme can assemble a great multidisciplinary pool of qualified medical professionals and nurses to ensure that the EU is able to face the danger of the resurgence in the pandemic. We now know what awaits us and we are working together with ICU and other healthcare professionals, doctors and nurses alike, as well as political actors for the containment of the virus to provide the best possible care to all citizens. Together we will prepare Europe for a second wave of COVID-19. For any questions or remarks, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you very much for your support,
Prof. Jozef Kesecioglu
President of ESICM
Prof. Maurizio Cecconi
President-Elect of ESICM
Chief Executive Officer of ESICM
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