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Communications training, surgical checklist can reduce costly postoperative complications
Date:12/5/2012

zed checklist could bring surgical teams into agreement and reduce patients' complications.

The communications training included three sessions on topics such as differences between introverts and extroverts, effective dialogue among all operating room personnel, and how to use a surgical checklist. Dr. Bliss's team used the one-page Association for Perioperative Registered Nurses Comprehensive Surgical Checklist developed in April 2010. It includes protocols mandated by the World Health Organization, The Joint Commission, and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and has been endorsed by the American College of Surgeons and other surgical organizations. For one group of procedures, the surgical team selected operations from the American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (ACS NSQIP ) database. These operations occurred between January 2007 and June 2010 and served as the baseline group, since these surgical teams neither had gone through the communications training nor had they used a checklist. Dr. Bliss said pulling this information from the ACS NSQIP database allowed the researchers to access standardized clinical and demographic data on the patients, along with information about 30-day surgical outcomes.

These procedures were compared with two other groups of surgical procedures that occurred between December 2010 and March 2011. In one group, 246 procedures involved surgical teams who had undergone communications training, while the other group included 73 procedures involving surgical teams who had not only gone through the same communications training but also used the checklist.

Study results showed that the communications training coupled with the checklist curbed complications within 30 days of the procedures. Complications included surgical site infections, vein blood clots, lung blood clots, and urinary tract infections. When surgical teams had no communications training and
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Contact: Sally Garneski
pressinquiry@facs.org
312-202-5409
American College of Surgeons
Source:Eurekalert

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