Safe Surgery Saves Lives
Launched in 2008, Safe Surgery Saves Lives was the second WHO Global Patient Safety Challenge.
The Safe Surgery Saves Lives initiative was established by WHO Patient Safety as part of the World Health Organization’s efforts to reduce the number of surgical deaths across the globe. The aim of the initiative was to harness political commitment and clinical will to address important safety issues, including inadequate anaesthetic safety practices, avoidable surgical infection and poor communication among team members. These have proved to be common, deadly and preventable problems in all countries and settings.
To assist operating teams in reducing the number of these events, WHO Patient Safety—in consultation with surgeons, anaesthetists, nurses, patient safety experts and patients around the world—has identified ten essential objectives for safe surgery. These were compiled into the WHO Surgical Safety Checklist. The aim of this Checklist is to reinforce accepted safety practices and foster better communication and teamwork between clinical disciplines. The Checklist is intended as tool for use by clinicians interested in improving the safety of their operations and reducing unnecessary surgical deaths and complications.