Hands-on ultrasound workshop well attended and highly appreciated

On Saturday, Feb. 5, 2022, the Des Moines University Continuing Medical Education (DMU CME) office hosted the annual Emergency Medicine Ultrasound Workshop through our ongoing partnership with MercyOne Des Moines and UnityPoint Health – Des Moines. The University welcomed more than 100 new and familiar faces to campus, which is the greatest number of learners in the workshop’s history!

At right, Tom Benzoni, D.O., assistant professor of osteopathic clinical medicine and an emergency medicine physician, demonstrates ultrasound techniques.

The workshop was held onsite at DMU, and was our first in-person, hands-on educational activity since March 2020, when the COVID-19 pandemic put traditional adult learning on hold and forced education providers to pivot to virtual learning or get left behind. The workshop planning committee did a wonderful job adapting to the new environment and hosted a successful virtual event in 2020, a first in the workshop’s history. Looking back at 2020, learners engaged in live ultrasound scanning demonstrations shared directly to their screens and expressed gratitude for still having access to the content. However, some activities are simply made for face-to-face interaction, and we were ecstatic to collaborate with our partners to ensure this year’s workshop could be held safely while still respecting the trials of the past two years.

Learners expressed gratitude for the opportunity to participate in the hands-on workshop, which provided “so many pearls related to ultrasound technique and anatomy landmarks,” and also expressed that the workshop’s practice sessions increased their competence to use this “extremely effective tool” that is “the future of emergency medicine” to rapidly diagnose or rule out various pathologies. 

The opportunity to meet in-person not only enhances individual learning but also provides a prime opportunity to network and build collaborative relationships within our local health care community.

From chief of staff and medical director to resident and medical student, learners represented a variety of specialties, job titles and backgrounds. They also represented organizations that are at varying stages of implementing their ultrasound program. One attendee noted that what they learned at the workshop will help inform the development of a new ultrasound program at their institution, which will also provide DMU students with additional high-quality clinical training opportunities.

We are grateful for our ongoing partnership and want to say a special thank you to the teaching assistants, facilitators and learners who each played an important role in the success of this year’s Emergency Medicine Ultrasound Workshop! We hope you enjoy a few photos from the workshop, which can be accessed here.

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