EdX and Harvard just launched a free online course in ventilator use for health care workers

Health care professionals who need training in ventilator use can now take a free online course created by edX and Harvard.

“As the number of patients requiring critical care continues to grow, medical professionals who do not normally work in an ICU setting are being reassigned to the ICU,” according to a press release about the course. “This course was created for these medical professionals to provide the preparation they need to treat COVID-19 patients.”

“Mechanical Ventilation for COVID-19” is available on Cambridge-based online learning institution edX.org and will teach the following, according to its website: the principles and psychology of mechanical ventilation, initial ventilator setting and adjustments, troubleshooting the ventilator, and ventilating patients in special circumstances that include Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome and obstructive lung disease.

The course was developed in collaboration with Susan Wilcox and Thomas Piraino at the American Association for Respiratory Care. Wilcox is the division chief of critical care at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, and Piraino is the clinical specialist for mechanical ventilation for the Centre of Excellence in Mechanical Ventilations at St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto.

“We are deeply fortunate to be located in a city that has a unique depth and breadth in academia and healthcare,” said Dr. Bharat Anand, vice provost for advances in learning at Harvard University. “That one of our experts, Dr. Susan Wilcox, leapt into action during the biggest public health crisis in a century to bring a course on the use of mechanical ventilators to medical professionals worldwide is testament not only to the skill but also to the commitment and dedication of Boston’s best.”

Health care professionals can enroll at edX.org.