In the 1970s, aviation accident investigators realized, by listening to black box recordings, than many airplane accidents were caused by a lack of communication in the cockpit. Likewise, a breakdown in communication between surgeon and staff often leads to devastating medical errors. And so, using techniques first employed by cockpit crews, some Chicago-area hospitals are having their staff undergo specialized training to help surgical teams improve communication and avoid errors. Such programs focusing on eliminating hierarchy in the operating room so that staff members aren't hesitant to question the actions of more experienced surgeons.
For more on the communication technique:
- read this Chicago Tribune article