237805 Surgical Checklists and Patient Safety: System-Level Strategies for Implementation

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Raed Moustafa, MA, MPH , School of Medicine, Boston University, Boston, MA
Scott Yee, MA , Division of Graduate Medical Sciences, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA
BACKGROUND: Surgical checklists have been demonstrated by the World Health Organization to be an effective means of reducing preventable medical error. Nevertheless, checklist use has yet to be adopted as a patient safety measure in the majority of US hospitals. OBJECTIVES: The purpose of this study is to identify system-level strategies for widespread implementation of surgical safety checklists, and to discuss methods for overall quality assessment. METHODS: Review of past and current checklist initiatives, and analysis of state and federal regulatory influence in outlining nation-wide implementation strategies. RESULTS/CONCLUSIONS: States possess the regulatory authority to enact policy-level guidelines to ensure checklist use as a surgical standard of care. State-level implementation strategies should include operative checklists that are 1) amenable to a system of accountability, 2) specialty-specific, and 3) instituted in a timely manner. Federal quality assessment should also be included to 1) better evaluate patient safety measures on a national level, 2) share good practices, and 3) to determine whether federal financial support may be needed.

Learning Areas:
Other professions or practice related to public health
Public health or related laws, regulations, standards, or guidelines
Public health or related public policy

Learning Objectives:
1) Identify system-level strategies for widespread implementation of surgical safety checklists in US hospitals. 2) Discuss methods for effective oversight and quality assurance.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: As a recent graduate student in Public Health and Medical Science, a predominant focus of my study concerned system- and policy-level approaches to ensure appropriateness, quality, and patient safety. I am continuing this research as a current medical student.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.