Patient safety checklists are now state law, as Nevada signed the Patient Protection Checklist bill (AB 280) into legislation yesterday.
More recently spearheaded by advocate Atul Gawande, MD, author of the Checklist Manifesto, the concept is simple: providers on the healthcare team should call out basic patient information and a plan prior to procedure with the aim to prevent medical errors and improve patient outcomes.
Seen rather as a best practice than a requirement, many facilities have yet to enact patient safety checklists. Nevada's new law requires that medical facilities establish patient safety checklists. AB 280 has specific requirements: establish a protocol for identifying patient and correct treatment delivery, and ensure each provider adheres to universal protocol including personal hygiene.
Like mandating seatbelts while driving, the new state law requires dutiful action for public safety and may influence other states to follow suit down the road.