Surgical safety checklist: maintaining success, sharing experiences

There have been two patient safety incidents recently reported to the College where the implant was not reviewed as part of the surgical safety checklist (SSCL) briefing resulting in the wrong implant being implanted during surgery.

Contributing factors to these patient safety incidents included relying on the OR slate order rather than using two patient-specific identifiers (e.g. name, date of birth) to identify the implant, and lack of adherence to the SSCL to ensure that key patient care information is communicated.

In light of these incidents, medical directors are encouraged to discuss with their surgical team the ongoing importance of the surgical safety checklist and the significant impact it can have on patient safety and improved outcomes.