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British Surgeons Model Handoffs After Race Car Team

According to today's print edition of the Wall Street Journal and writer Gautan Naik,

LONDON – After surgeons completed a six-hour operation to fix the hole in a boy's heart, Angus McEwan supervised one of the more dangerous phases of the procedure: transferring the fragile three-year-old from surgery to the intensive care unit.

Thousands of such "handoffs" occur in hospitals every day, and devastating mistakes can happen during them. This one went off without a hitch, thanks to pit-stop techniques. . .

"It was smooth. We didn't miss anything," said Dr. McEwan, a senior anesthesiologist at Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children. His role as leader of the handoff was partly modeled after Ferrari's "lollipop man," who uses a large paddle to direct drivers to the pit.

In one of the more unlikely collaborations of modern medicine, Britain's largest children hospital has revamped its patient handoff techniques by copying the choreographed pit stops of Italy's Formula One racing team. . .

Great Ormond Street Hospital for Sick Children (GOSH) was founded in London in 1852. This was an extraordinary period when Brits gave their own money and time to establish hospitals. Without any kind of government help, working together, they created the finest medical system in the world, and offered it free to the poor.

According to Wikipedia, "Great Ormond Street Hospital is thought to be the first hospital providing in-patient beds specifically for children in the English-speaking world. . .Now an NHS Hospital Trust, Great Ormond Street Hospital is still world-renowned for its pioneering work in children's medicine. Due to its ground-breaking work over many years, it is amongst the most famous hospitals in the United Kingdom."

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