Published 10/1/2008

AAOS endorses WHO Safe Surgery Project

Courtesy of Pan American Health Organization

At the launch of the World Health Organization’s (WHO) “Safe Surgery Saves Lives” initiative, AAOS President Tony Rankin, MD (center), and AAOS Patient Safety Committee Chair Robert L. Brooks, MD (right) are greeted by Timothy Evans, MD, DPhil, WHO assistant director general. The goal of the Safe Surgery Saves Lives Challenge is to improve the safety of surgical care around the world by defining a core set of safety standards that can be applied in all WHO member states. Annually, an estimated 230 million major opreations are performed around the world.

As part of the campaign, a surgical safety checklist, based on the Universal Protocol that the AAOS helped develop, was introduced to ensure that patients undergo the right operation at the correct body site, with safe anesthesia, established infection prevention measures, and effective teamwork for safer care.