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Wednesday, June 25, 2008

A simple checklist which has the potential to save thousands of lives could soon be implemented in all British NHS hospitals, it has emerged.

Medical checklist could save thousands of patients
Article in the Telegraph

This is so basic and so obvious that you'd think even the arrogant medical profession would have thought of it before and been using it for years...


"A coalition of 13 medical organisations, led by the National Patient Safety Agency and including the Royal Colleges of Surgeons, Anaesthetists, Obstetricians and Nurses, has pledged to introduce the checklist to every operating theatre in Britain.

Martin Fletcher, chief executive of the agency, said: "All these professional groups have committed to making this a reality in the UK. We are one of the first countries to get behind it."

The basic checks range from confirming which area of the body is being operated on, to counting the number of swabs and needles used to ensure none has been left inside the patient.

Another involves simply making sure each member of the surgical team is aware of who is doing what during the procedure.

Of the eight million operations carried out in the UK last year there were 129,000 reported incidents in which patients were put at risk, according to the National Patient Safety Agency.

An estimated 2,000 NHS patients die each year as a result of errors in treatment, and an inquiry by the National Audit Office in 2005 concluded that half of all incidents could have been avoided."