Deutsche Gesellschaft für Chirurgie

WHO-Aktion Safe Surgery Saves Lives

Dear Colleague,

Following the one-year anniversary of the WHO Surgical Safety Checklist the World Health Organization is looking to change the face of surgery throughout the world by increasing global use of the Surgical Safety Checklist.  This simple 19-item checklist reduced the complications and mortality associated with a variety of surgical procedures by more than 30 percent in a recent international study, and these findings were published in the New England Journal of Medicine in January 2009. Over the past year this checklist has met great enthusiasm from surgical teams and governments worldwide.  To date over 1,700 facilities representing 86 countries around the globe have registered as participating hospitals and more than 15 countries have mobilized their efforts to implement the checklist at a national level.

We invite you to join the ranks of these champions and bring the checklist to your hospital or to other health facilities throughout your country. Specifically, we are asking you to trial the checklist in one operating theatre by December 15, 2009 and to give us feedback about how this tool worked for you and your colleagues by registering on our website.

If you are not a member of the surgical team at your institution, would you please forward this email to one of your surgical colleagues or hospital administrators so that they may consider participating in the programme.

To trial the checklist or to learn more about this project simply register your hospital online by clicking here. We have a host of related materials available for download at our websites: www.who.int/safesurgery and www.safesurg.org. If you have already started using the checklist, we would love to hear about your experiences using this tool. You can write to us at: safesurgery(at)hsph.harvard.edu. Please don't hesitate to contact us with any questions about this programme.

We look forward to collaborating with you on this exciting effort to improve surgical safety globally.

Yours sincerely,

The Safe Surgery Saves Lives Team
WHO Patient Safety
Harvard School of Public Health