News story

Learning to avoid food poisoning

Learning NewsBrightwave Group

How important is it for you to wash your hands before handling food? A simple question perhaps, but in fact a major challenge for University College London Hospital (UCLH), when tackling the issue of food hygiene.

UCLH had identified a training need for all hospital staff involved in the handling and storage of food and the feeding of patients. The training needed to be a mix of general information and UCLH specifics, presented to users in an interesting and engaging manner. It was decided that this would be best achieved by a blended approach, mixing face-to-face training with a short and punchy e-Learning course.

UCLH turned to BrightWave to design and develop the e-Learning. "BrightWave was most impressive on first acquaintance for listening skills and the offer of options," comments Sarah Adams from UCLH. "Those first impressions have been borne out by our experiences on the project."

The training takes place in a virtual hospital ward, which the learner explores, discovering information on food hygiene as they go. For example, in the laboratory, the learner discovers what actually happens when someone develops food poisoning and learns about the different bacteria and their symptoms.

In each room, the appropriate information is presented and the learner is guided through an exercise designed to reinforce the learning. These exercises range from sorting food items by date in a kitchen fridge, to finding possible causes of a pest infestation.

The course needed to be designed for a diverse audience with varying levels of computer literacy. The style and user interface were created to be intuitive and easy to use. An engaging design was essential, as in a short space of time, the course needed to capture the learner's attention and motivate them to take good food hygiene seriously.

The course has been designed to allow rapid customisation for other NHS Trusts, as similar training needs have been identified across the country.

For further information on the food hygiene course, or for a customised version for your organisation, please contact Lars Hyland ( or 01273 827676).

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