Registered Nurses’ Experiences of Using a 3D Game in the Development of clinical Competency: A qualitative Study

Background: Health professionals should receive lifelong education to maintain competency in medication administration and ensure safe medical practice. Game-based education is one way to enhance and ensure health professionals’ medication competency. Objectives: This study aimed to describe registered nurses’ experiences of the Imagine 3D game and their views of the effectiveness of this game-based education program in improving their medication competency. Methods: This qualitative interview study included eight registered nurses who completed an education program based on the 3D game Imagine, which aims to strengthen medication administration competency. Data were collected via semi-structured interviews between March and April 2019 and analyzed using content analysis. Results: Three themes were extracted from the study with the following concepts: (1) experiences of playing; (2) the usability of the game in verifying nurses’ medication competency; and (3) the game’s effectiveness in fostering registered nurses’ medical competency. On analyzing the nurses’ personal experiences, the game-based education program was valuable in training nurses to enhance their medication administration competency. Participants reported that the game was comfortable to play and useful in repeated medication administration tasks, and it increased their self-reflection and even changed their actions based on learning. The nurses reported that the game was most beneficial to nursing students and recent graduates and was used especially during the introductory period. Moreover, based on the interviews, the game was also useful in continuing education; therefore, it should be applied in all healthcare professionals’ training. Conclusions: This study shows that a 3D computer game can be useful for nurses to foster their knowledge and expertise in medication administration tasks.