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Surgical Safety Checklist

Patient safety remains the most important priority for Queensway Carleton Hospital and this involves ensuring a safe experience for patients who undergo surgery here. Our patients can expect safe, high quality care, and one tool used to help ensure a positive patient care experience is a surgical safety checklist. A surgical safety checklist is a patient safety communication tool that is used by a team of operating room professionals (Nurses, Surgeons, Anesthesiologists, and others) to discuss important details about each surgical case. In many ways, the surgical checklist is similar to an airline pilot’s checklist used just before take-off. It is a final check prior to surgery used to make sure everyone knows the important medical information they need to know about the patient, all equipment is available and in working order, and everyone is ready to proceed.


Will a Surgical Safety Checklist be used on me?

If you undergo a surgery at Queensway Carleton Hospital, you can expect that the SSCL will be used as part of the procedure. It will be used by your healthcare team before, during and after your surgery to help the team familiarize themselves with your medical history and any special requirements that may be needed for your individual case.

The briefing phase:

  • Verify with patient name and procedure to be done
  • Allergy check
  • Medications check
  • Operation site, side and procedure
  • Lab tests, X-rays

The "time out" phase:

  • Patient position
  • Operation site and side and procedure
  • Antibiotics check

The Debriefing Phase:

  • Surgeon reviews important items
  • Anesthesiologist reviews important items
  • Nurse reviews correct counts

The Surgical Safety Checklist is considered "performed" when the designated checklist coordinator confirms that surgical team members have implemented and/or addressed all of the necessary tasks and items in each of the three phases: Briefing; Time Out; and Debriefing. Therefore, the SSCL compliance indicator is a process measure, measuring the degree to which all three phases of the SSCL was performed correctly and appropriately for each surgical patient.


Surgical Safety Checklist rates 2016

 Reporting Period

 Compliance Rate

  January - March

 99%

April - June

 99%

July - September

 99%

October - December

99.5%