Edition 31

August 2020


This time last year we in CIME were engaged in compiling a risk register. One of the ‘risks’ identified has since come to be a reality: a national emergency threatening to overwhelm health services requiring the re-purposing of CIME facilities to treat actual patients. Enter COVID. We were more than willing participants in sealing off the Ground Floor and removing all equipment and relocating on the first and second floors, as requested. We saw it coming. Imaginatively re-purposing some of our rooms, and updating our operating procedures has allowed us to prepare for face to face teaching whenever it re-commences. In return for our efforts to be more compact, we have given over the excellent accommodation on ground floor for 55 patients. Near, yet so far: separate entrance, separate ventilation, separate everything. Design, engineering and our clinical colleagues have done a fantastic job but to be honest, we’re counting the days for this to be over and to regain the use of the multipurpose hall and the other specialized areas we’ve temporarily ceded. CIME is unique: one of a kind and we need to retain and maximise the benefits we all get from such a centre.

Not that we’re twiddling our thumbs. We have participated in and organized ourselves many webinars and simulation-based courses and produced educational resources (videos) for healthcare professionals across the country, resulting in improved skills in nasopharyngeal swabbing, pronation of ventilated patients, and code blue management as examples. Reaching many hundreds of participants, and receiving external funding and support from external agencies.  We’ve also resumed training courses with colleagues in AKU Hospital to allow American Heart Association licensing to be maintained.

To be honest we’re all looking forward to the happy chatter of students and faculty later in the year.

Professor Charles Docherty





CIME training helps nurses care for coronavirus patients

As the coronavirus continues to spread, hospitals are taking action to prevent further cases and to lessen the impact of the outbreak. The growing need for nurses to care for critically ill patients means that it is imperative to prepare the staff working in these areas.

The Department of Nursing Education Services in collaboration with the Centre for Innovation in Medical Education organised a four-day training for AKUH nurses and trainee nurse interns to take care of acutely ill coronavirus patients admitted in ICUs. The aim was to prepare more nursing staff, as there is a limited number of trained nursing staff in ICU settings.





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AKU students help educate schoolchildren about COVID-19

Medical and nursing students from AKU's Society for Promoting Innovation in Education's community wing along with CIME designed a course to educate school kids about day-to-day life during COVID-19 pandemic.

The one-and-a-half-hour online course includes knowledge about symptoms, prevention tips, self-screening advice, and guidelines for self-isolation and quarantine.






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Nurses in AKU support colleagues in the public sector

The Department of Nursing Education Services offered a five-day COVID-19 online training programme to public sector nurses as part of the University’s agreement with the Sindh government on building the capacity of frontline workers in government hospitals. The programme was organised at the Centre for Innovation in Medical Education, CIME.



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Simulation helps frontline staff to save COVID-19 patients’ lives

Elephants sleep standing on their feet for good reason. When they lie down, their massive body weight crushes their lungs preventing full expansion of the chest and unless they stand up again quickly they die of hypoxia. Similarly and for some strange reason, obese patients with COVID-19 struggle to breathe when they’re lying on their back, thought to be because, as with Elephants, the weight of their abdomen crushes the diaphragm, leading to rapid deterioration in oxygenation. Breaking this vicious circle is easy – although appearing at first sight to be counter-intuitive. Simply, turn the patient face down in bed, onto the ‘prone’ position. This can improve oxygenation immediately and patients can show significant improvement. This sounds easy – but what complicates the process is the size of the patient, the severity of their condition and the risk of extubation or accidental removal of lines. Managing all the risks involved requires a team approach, excellent coordination, and clear leadership and communication. A classic indication that practice through simulation would be required to get this right.

​CIME in collaboration with the Department of Physiotherapy designed a workshop for interprofessional staff from ICU to be trained on the process of ‘proning’ coronavirus patients and safely adjusting head positions while intubated.




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Our Education Analyst receives the ISYD Youth Leadership Award 2020

Congratulations to Mr Sarmad Muhammad Soomar, Simulation Education Analyst at CIME, on being awarded by the Institute for Social and Youth Development (ISYD) Pakistan with the ISYD Youth Leadership Awards 2020 for his contributions in the area of sexual and reproductive health and family planning.

The distinguished award was presented at a virtual event organized to mark World Population Day on July 11, 2020, to 12 ambitious youth activists across Pakistan who have been striving to help youth bring positive change to society.








Webinars on the use of PPE in relation to COVID-19

CIME in collaboration with SAMI pharmaceuticals arranged two webinars on the use of  personal protective equipment (PPE) for front-line healthcare professionals (HCPs) of Sindh. The aim was to disseminate information among HCPs regarding the appropriate use of PPE while taking care of suspected / confirmed coronavirus patients as per the guidelines of the World Health Organization and Department of Infection Prevention and Hospital Epidemiology.

It also focused on implementation of droplet and contact precautions wherever applicable. On the basis of current evidence, rational use of PPE and consideration during limited resources were also discussed. The sessions were facilitated by nurse instructors of the Department of Nursing Education Services. It helped HCPs to identify practice gaps and to adhere with consistent clinical practices to avoid transmission of virus.





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I-SPIE CIME: a students’ eye-view

Accompany new students on a tour of the Aga Khan University’s Centre for Innovation in Medical Education (CIME) - the first in South Asia to be accredited by the US-based Society for Simulation in Healthcare. Let our students from SPIE, (the society for promoting innovation in education) be your guide.

Witness the pedagogically optimised venues for seminars, conferences and workshops as well as our high fidelity simulated hospital and community environments. CIME is the most innovative healthcare teaching and learning centre in Pakistan as well as in the region, and aspires to be on a par with the best in the world. Watch video…








Boot camp for trainee nurse interns

The transition from nursing student to nursing intern can be exciting, stressful and challenging. To facilitate this, the Department of Nursing Education Services (NES) partnered with CIME to offer a two-week Boot Camp for newly hired 145 trainee nurse interns (TNIs) early 2020. Watch this video to hear participants reflect on their experiences.








Boot camp for PGME interns and residents

The 2nd Annual Boot Camp was organised in December 2019 for 160 new interns and residents hired at AKUH for the year 2020. It was aimed at providing participants with an experiential learning opportunity to strengthen their knowledge and skills and to provide a comprehensive orientation to the working environment and protocols followed in the hospital. Enjoy the video highlights.





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Mailing Address:

Centre for Innovation in Medical Education (CIME), Aga Khan University, Stadium Road P.O. Box 3500, Karachi 74800, Pakistan

​Tel: +92 21 3486 3733 | Email: cime@aku.edu | Website: www.ak​u.edu/cime