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Escalation of Care: A Surgical Improvement Initiative

Hours: 1.00

Best suited for: Surgeons and residents in all surgical specialties, surgical nurses and quality improvement staff. Other interested healthcare practitioners are also welcome to participate.

Description: Surgical residents do not always call the attending physician about critical patient events, believing that it is not necessary or that the call will not be welcome. Failure to call for help is associated with failure to rescue, adverse events and claims of medical malpractice. Hospitals and surgical facilities are called upon by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education to formulate policies about communications between surgeons such as escalation of care, and to incorporate them into resident training. This monograph will review the results of recent studies and multidisciplinary initiatives in a search for lessons in improving surgical communications.

Learning Objectives: Upon completion, participants should be able to:

  1. Define “escalation of care” and “failure to rescue” in surgery
  2. Describe findings about “escalation of care” and “failure to rescue” from recent studies in the medical literature
  3. Describe a hospital initiative to improve communication between surgical residents and attendings
  4. Design and implement an initiative at your institution to measure and improve surgical communications that will improve escalation of care and patient safety

Learning Assessment: There will be a post test for this activity with a minimum performance requirement of 8 out of 10 correct answers.

Estimated time to complete activity: 60 minutes

CME Information - Read

Residents will earn a certificate of completion. Physicians will earn CME credit.

Method and Medium: To obtain CME credit, view the entire online presentation, complete the evaluation and post test and print your certificate online.

CME Credit: 1.0


State Requirements: This course may meet specific CME requirements for the following states. It is the user's responsibility to confirm whether content meets the user's state's specific requirements:
Connecticut - This activity includes content in Risk Management
Massachusetts - This activity includes content in Risk Management
Pennsylvania - This activity includes content in Risk Management / Patient Safety
Texas - This activity includes content in Ethics and/or Professional Responsibility

CME Disclosure Policy: LAMMICO/Medical Interactive requires planners, authors, faculty and all those who influence the content of a CME activity to disclose any financial relationships they have with commercial interests that are relevant to the CME activity. The disclosures shall be reviewed for any conflict of interest and subject to a mechanism for resolution of conflict of interest. A disclosure statement of relevant financial relationships will be made to the audience prior to the activity.

Disclosure: The authors, expert reviewer, editors and planning committee members for this activity have no relevant financial relationships to disclose.

Authors: Ruth Ryan, RN, BSN, MSW, CPHRM - Read Bio

Medical Expert Reviewer: James E. Brown, MD - Read Bio

Editors: Karen K. Davis, MA, CPHRM - Read Bio

Content Advisors/Planning Committee Members - Read

Risk Management Committee Members - Read

Electronic Hardware and Software Requirements - Read

Web Master Contact Information: For assistance, contact Shea Ivey at 866/398-1038 or help@medicalinteractive.com
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Disclaimer: This educational material is not intended to substitute for individualized clinical judgment.  It does not dictate an exclusive method of care, and it is not applicable to all circumstances and all patients. 

Copyright Information: Copyright © 2018

Bibliography: To view and download References & Resources for this presentation, please select the References tab/link below.

Member and Subscriber Access
Interested in a CME program like this for your team or facility? Contact us to schedule it and talk about pricing.

Original Release Date: July 16, 2018
Review Date:
Expiration Date: July 16, 2021

This course is offered through Experix, a wholly owned subsidiary of Physicians Insurance, and is based on more than 30 years' experience in providing continuing medical education. This course is complimentary for Physicians Insurance members.

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