Inside scoop from our experts: Simulation training improves code blue responses

HCPro's Weekly Update on the ANCC Magnet Recognition Program®*, August 25, 2009

This week, a reader asks about best practices for training staff on code blue response. Read the response from advisor Meryl Montgomery, RN, MSN, ANCC Magnet Recognition Program® (MRP) director at The Medical Center of Central Georgia in Macon.

Q: What are some best practices on how to run a mock code staff training event?

A: Mock or simulated code blues can be a useful training device for nurses and all members of the healthcare team. The best times to use them are when you have:

  • Several new nurses or new team members
  • A new service or new location for an old service
  • A unit that has few codes and could use practice
  • Changes to the code blue processes or equipment

Your interdisciplinary code blue/arrest committee should be involved in plans for mock codes so it can offer support and suggestions. An annual plan can be helpful to prepare resources, obtain supplies and equipment ahead of time, and supplement with additional mock codes as needed.

The best staff members to run the practice codes are your educators or clinical nurse specialists CNS). This is also a great opportunity for your expert RNs to shine. If you have a point-based clinical ladder, this leadership experience should be included in the portfolio.

Editor's note: Do you have a question for our experts? If you would like us to consider your query for publication, please e-mail it to senior managing editor Rebecca Hendren at

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