First of all, I just wanted to share some feedback I just received today, which to me exemplifies the impact that exposure can have. It’s now been about fifteen years since I independently picked up a probe (the cardiology department was decimated in my shop when I started there, and there was an unused full-sized echo machine that no one noticed or cared if I took), and maybe twelve years since the development of the first POCUS courses (shout out to my friend Dr. Yannick Beaulieu, intensivist-sonographer-inventer extraordinaire who started the first FOCUS course – now run by CAE), and although the FOAMed world is full of POCUS, the real world is still lagging behind. But I think that’s about to change, and we should see the second generation of clinician-sonographers getting into the trenches soon. I’d call it a very slow explosion. But I have a feeling there is a lot brewing under the surface…
So, back to the feedback. A young internist, Dr. Alexandre Lafleur, joined me for a 2 or 3 day Mini-Fellowship in the ICU at Scarborough General Hospital a few years ago, and I remember he had quite a few “lightbulb” moments, where he clearly saw the immense clinical application of POCUS. I just recently asked him for some feedback which he was kind enough to give me:
« I have had the chance to participate in a shadowing experience with Dr Rola at the Scarborough General Hospital ICU during two days in 2013. As a general internist and assistant program director, this experience really opened my eyes regarding the use of bedside ultrasound in general internal medicine and for IM residents. I think I would have benefited more of this experience if I had done more training previously, and I encourage future participants to do so. However, I came back from this experience with a very clear idea of the benefit of CUSE for my patients and for our residency training program. I really saw how ultrasound was used ‘in action’, in a much more realistic way than what is usually shown in CPD meetings. I also saw its limitations and the skills I needed to develop to generate good images (not something you can learn over the weekend!). Since then, I participated in formal trainings and licensing activities (more than 250 supervised US on acute care patients) and now practice bedside ultrasound autonomously. We now offer a bedside ultrasound training for our residents with the help of the emergency medicine department and an ultrasound-guided procedural simulation lab. Nothing in CPD has improved my practice and benefited the health of my patients as much as bedside ultrasound training. »
Alexandre Lafleur, MD, MSc (Ed.), FRCPC
Spécialiste en médecine interne
CHU de Québec – CHUL
Wow. So I can’t see a better scenario. From someone who had minimal ultrasound ability in 2013, to now an educator and policy decision-maker in the field. Absolutely fantastic. I am honoured to have triggered this domino effect. I am certain he has now countless tales of how POCUS saved the day.
CME now available!
So, great news, finally went thru the CME process and lo and behold, the Mini-Fellowships qualify for 25 Section 2 credits (regardless of the length) and 3 hours of Section 3 credits (per day of fellowship). For you americans:
Through an agreement between the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada and the American Medical Association, physicians may convert Royal College MOC credits to AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™.
See here for more info about the Mini-Fellowships.