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Provider; Leader

The Surgical Care Safety Summit brought together over 30 individuals representing professional associations, quality councils, provincial ministries, health authorities and a patients' group. The subsequent Surgical Care Safety Action Plan identified a goal of preventing surgical harm through enhancing the use of both retrospective and proactive analyses.

This guide is the culmination of the work of the Proactive Analysis for Surgical Care Safety Action Team. Surgical Safety in Canada: A 10-year review of CMPA and HIROC medico-legal data, the retrospective analysis, is also available.

In healthcare, when patients are harmed or nearly harmed, reactive investigations are conducted.  While these are important, they usually focus only on one patient, although occasionally the care of a group of patients may be reviewed. In a way, these investigations are too late- some patients will have come to harm from hazards in the healthcare system. From a safety point of view, being able to find those hazards before patients are harmed is better for patients, their care providers and the entire healthcare system. This kind of investigation - proactive analysis - is rarely used in healthcare. This guide, although not a 'how to' document, will help you and your colleagues to learn more about proactive analyses and prepare to undertake them.