This episode of The Hoot Chronicles came out on 17th October and you can listen to it on our podcast Chirping with ABA Owls. This should take you to our podcast page or you can listen on iTunes, Podbean and other podcasting apps.
Every month, we discuss a book or article(s) that we find interesting – For this episode, we moved away from autism, went into the medical field and covered The Checklist Manifesto by Dr. Atul Gawande
About the author
Dr. Gawande is a surgeon, writer and public health leader. He is currently serving under the Biden-Harris administration as Assistant Administrator of Global Health Development at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID).
There is a quite vast list of accomplishments, which you are welcome to read about in Wikipedia or on his website: http://atulgawande.com/ (but just as a warning, when I opened this last website, it said the connection was not protected).
Who should read this book?
Anyone. The way the book is written allows it to reach pretty much every reader in the world.
What is covered in the book?
Through his own experiences, Dr Gawande shows us how checklists are important in a variety of contexts and how he brought them into his own practice as a surgeon.
The book explores how situations as complex as flying a plane, building an edifice and performing surgery, can be aided by a checklist. This is not to say that checklists are perfect, as anything, they can be flawed. However, it is important to carry on perfecting them so they can support people. Even though the book delves into the use of checklists in a professional environment, they can be used by anyone in any setting.
Dr Gawade discusses how he worked on a project with WHO (World Health Organisation) on developing a surgery checklist that could be used on a global scale – I’m not sure if they had a behaviour analyst on this project, but from reading the book, probably not.
They tested the checklist in 8 different hospitals across the world in rich, poor and middle class environments. After 3 months of the pilot study starting, nearly all hospitals reported that the checklist helped them correct errors in procedures, prevent errors from occurring and deaths from surgeries decreased by 47% !
At the end of the trial period, they asked the people who used the checklist to fill out an anonymous survey. 80% of the people surveyed found the checklist easy to use, 20% didn’t. But when asked “if you were having this operation, would you want the checklist used?” and 93% said yes! Social Validity – super important in ABA!
The book highlights a few key features a checklist should have: Pause points (when the checks happen), Communication (aka teams talking to each other) and focusing on important and critical steps (as opposed to going through every single little one).
The book also explains how they perfected the checklist for the surgical setting – revising what was needed to stay, keeping it brief, quick and efficient, simulating situations and training staff.
Where can you get the book?
Ebay: £ 4.43
Book Depository: £8.18
AbeBooks: £3.74 (not including shipping)
World of Books: £4.19
Apple Books: $10.99
Not found in: Google books (only a sample).
Extra Resources and Links
We hope you’ve found this helpful, we will try our best to publish blog posts as the podcast episodes come out.
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Thank you for reading,
Carla and Lauren