Which factors predict candidate outcome in advanced life support courses? A preliminary observational study

Claudio Sandroni, Gian Luigi Gonnella, Chiara De Waure, Fabio Cavallaro, Giuseppe La Torre, Massimo Antonelli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


PURPOSE: To identify factors associated with candidate outcome in the European Resuscitation Council (ERC) advanced life support (ALS) provider courses. METHODS: Medical doctors participating as candidates to consecutive ALS courses organised by an ERC training centre in Italy were enrolled in this prospective cohort study. The association between the ALS course outcome and candidate demographics, professional background and pre-course knowledge measured by using the pre-course multiple choice quiz (MCQ) was investigated by using logistic regression. RESULTS: A total of 283 candidates, median age 31 years, were evaluated. Among them, 269 (95.1%) passed the final evaluation and 14 (4.9%) failed. Candidates who passed were younger (median age 31 vs. 37.5 years; p = 0.006) and attained a higher pre-course MCQ score (median 84 vs. 72.5%; p < 0.0001). On multivariate analysis, a higher pre-course MCQ score (OR 1.18 [95%CI 1.09-1.28]) and a basic life support (BLS) certification (OR 5.00 [95%CI 1.12-22.42]) were independent predictors of candidate success, while older age was associated with a significantly higher risk of failing (OR 0.90 [95%CI 0.83-0.97]). Female candidates had higher pass rates (97.2 vs. 91.2%; p = 0.048); however, after correction for confounders gender was not significantly associated with candidate outcome. Neither candidate specialty nor site of work was a predictor of candidate success. CONCLUSIONS: On ALS courses, younger age and a higher level of specific pre-course knowledge, as measured by both the pre-course MCQ and the presence of BLS certification, are the most important predictors of success. Candidate gender and professional background did not show a significant correlation with course outcome
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1521-1525
Number of pages5
JournalIntensive Care Medicine
Publication statusPublished - 2010


  • Advanced Life Support/Education
  • Clinical Competence
  • Education, Medical
  • Health Knowledge


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