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Surgical checklist reduces complications by one third

BMJ 2009; 338 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.b157 (Published 15 January 2009) Cite this as: BMJ 2009;338:b157
  1. Peter Moszynski
  1. 1London

    A simple surgical checklist can lower the incidence of deaths and complications after surgery by one third, according to research published by the World Health Organization (New England Journal of Medicine 2009 Jan 14, doi:10.1056/NEJMsa0810119).

    A study of hospitals in six WHO regions shows that the rate of serious complications after surgery fell from 11% in the baseline period to 7% after introduction of the checklist, a reduction of one third. Deaths among inpatients after big operations fell by more than 40% (from 1.5% to 0.8%).

    Data were collected from 7688 patients—3733 before the checklist was introduced and 3955 after.

    The study was carried out in hospitals in rich …

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