The implementation of a perioperative checklist increases patients' perioperative safety and staff satisfaction

Acta Anaesthesiol Scand. 2012 Mar;56(3):332-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1399-6576.2011.02590.x. Epub 2011 Dec 20.


Background: The implementation of the 'Surgical Safety Checklist' caused a significant reduction in the incidence of complications and mortality among patients undergoing surgery. The aim of the present study was to evaluate perioperative safety standards and the quality of interprofessional cooperation before and after the introduction of a safety checklist from staff members' point of view.

Methods: Employees' attitude concerning safety-relevant aspects of the perioperative period, work processes, and quality of interprofessional cooperation was surveyed before and 3 months after introducing an adapted form of the 'Surgical Safety Checklist' by a 19-item questionnaire.

Results: After the implementation of the checklist, the cognizance of the names and functions of the individual operating room (OR) staff members, verification of the patient's written consent for surgery, indication for antibiotics before the surgical incision, and the quality of interprofessional cooperation were rated more positively. Traumatology physicians were more convinced that all artifacts had been removed from the surgical field. Finally, communication about intraoperative complications had improved.

Conclusions: Our attitude surveys demonstrate that from the OR staff's perspective, in the perioperative setting, safety-relevant factors can be handled significantly better and with greater awareness by implementing a safety checklist as proposed by the World Health Organization.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Anesthesia
  • Attitude of Health Personnel*
  • Checklist*
  • Humans
  • Informed Consent
  • Interprofessional Relations
  • Job Satisfaction*
  • Medical Errors / prevention & control
  • Patient Care Team
  • Patient Safety*
  • Perioperative Care / methods*
  • Risk Assessment
  • Surgical Procedures, Operative
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Wounds and Injuries / surgery
  • Wounds and Injuries / therapy