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CSU-ALS / CALS in Europe




CALS originated in the minds of two UK Cardiac Surgeons in 2003. By 2004 we ran our first course in Stoke on Trent – England. Slowly but surely CALS teaching spread around the UK. Initially it was taught at National Meetings and as a ’travelling roadshow’ at a number of hospitals.





With the publication of the European Guideline in 2009 and increasing interest around the world we felt that the training model needed to be changed to reflect the needs for continual professional development (with obligatory recertification) and a standardization of the teaching process. From these principles and the needs to incorporate specific teaching adjuncts, manuals and E-Learning it became obvious that we needed to increase the numbers of trainers and get these people to train their own staff in their own units.





The Training the Trainers course was developed relatively early and produced high quality trainers who started training staff at their own hospitals which became ‘Centers of Excellence’. These Centers taught 2 – 6 courses per year to a uniformly high standard and the concept rapidly spread around the UK. Now in 2020 18 of the NHS Cardiac Surgical Centers in the UK and 2 of the large private hospital chains (Spire and HCA) have become Centers of Excellence. Training the Trainers courses are held nationally at Manchester 2-3 times per year in a simulation center.





Furthermore, the CALS course is mandatory for all Cardiac Surgical Trainees in the UK as special – Surgically focused – course is run yearly for them at the SCTS ST3 ‘Boot Camp’ in the Midlands.



Spreading into Europe via national meetings and ‘travelling roadshows’ occurred in the late 2000’s across mainland Europe. Courses were taught at EACTS meetings and in Greece, Spain, Hungary, and Germany. It became necessary for a number of reasons (often pertaining to language and differing medical/ nursing/ AHP educational issues) that we partner with well- established educational organisations to spread CALS in similar ways to those in the UK. Thus, was born the collaboration between CALS and the Critical Care Society of Spain (SEMICYUC) formally spread CALS throughout Spain. Now in 2020 there are 10 SEMICYUC units training CALS in a Center of Excellence Model across mainland Spain, Mallorca and the Canary Islands. Similar collaborations are ongoing with Italian and German units to ensure roll out of CALS in a generic high-quality manner throughout their health care systems.





1435 Taylor Wood Rd, Simpsonville, KY
Phone: (540) 383-2817


The Lanterns, Sandy Lane, STAFFS ST5 5DP, UK
Phone (+44)  7515911116


To ensure that cardiac patients receive the best possible care during the worst possible times

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