Infant cardiopulmonary resuscitation (iCPR) is often poorly performed, predominantly because of ineffective learning, poor retention and decay of skills over time. The aim of this study was to investigate whether an individualized, competence-based approach to simulated iCPR retraining could result in high skill retention of infant chest compressions (iCC) at follow-up. An observational study with 118 healthcare students was conducted over 12 months from November 2019. Participants completed pediatric resuscitation training and a 2-min assessment on an infant mannequin. Participants returned for monthly assessment until iCC competence was achieved. Competence was determined by passing assessments in two consecutive months. After achieving competence, participants returned just at follow-up. For each ‘FAIL’ during assessment, up to six minutes of practice using real-time feedback was completed and the participant returned the following month. This continued until two consecutive monthly ‘PASSES’ were achieved, following which, the participant was deemed competent and returned just at follow-up. Primary outcome was retention of competence at follow-up. Descriptive statistics were used to analyze demographic data. Independent t-test or Mann–Whitney U test were used to analyze the baseline characteristics of those who dropped out compared to those remaining in the study. Differences between groups retaining competence at follow-up were determined using the Fisher exact test. On completion of training, 32 of 118 participants passed the assessment. Of those achieving iCC competence at month 1, 96% retained competence at 9–10 months; of those achieving competence at month 2, 86% demonstrated competence at 8–9 months; of those participants achieving competence at month 3, 67% retained competence at 7–8 months; for those achieving competence at month 4, 80% demonstrated retention at 6–7 months.
Conclusion: Becoming iCC competent after initial training results in high levels of skill retention at follow-up, regardless of how long it takes to achieve competence.
What is Known:
• Infant cardiopulmonary resuscitation (iCPR) is often poorly performed and skills decay within months after training.
• Regular iCPR skills updates are important, but the optimal retraining interval considering individual training needs has yet to be established.
What is New:
• Infant chest compression (iCC) competence can be achieved within one to four months after training and once achieved, it can be retained for many months.
• With skill reinforcement of up to 28 minutes after initial training, 90% of individuals were able to achieve competence in iCC and 86% retained this competence at follow-up.