I am delighted to let readers of this blog know about our new book, Beyond the Checklist: What Else Health Care Can Learn from Aviation Safety and Teamwork, which was just published in the series on The Culture and Politics of Health Care Work that I co-edit for Cornell University Press. I wrote the book with international commercial airlines pilot Patrick Mendenhall and medical educator and ethnographer Bonnie Blair O’Connor.
As the title suggests, the book is a very detailed look at the aviation safety model (ASM) known as Crew Resource Management( CRM) or, in its contemporary iteration, Threat and Error Management(TEM). We were delighted that Captain Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger agreed to write a foreword for the book. The book is designed to help people in critical industries like healthcare understand how aviation became safer and how they can adapt the aviation safety model (ASM) to their work — particularly when it is in healthcare, which should be a high reliability industry but which has a ways to go to attain that status.
As I think about patient safety and teamwork , I have been reading a lot about how other high reliability, safety-critical industries have achieved better performance in these areas than health care.One of the reasons that high reliability industries are safe is because they recognize that safety is a function of teamwork and that teamwork is not possible with the recognition of a very specific kind of group cognition – what cognitive anthropologist Edwin Hutchins calls “distributed cognition.”In his work on aircraft carriers and aviation for his book, Cognition in the Wild, Hutchins laid out a theory of distributed cognition that is crucial to our understanding of how genuine teamwork functions in complex endeavors. Read more >>