Help Fund Movie That Connects Aviation Simulation to Healthcare Simulation

aviation team training into healthcare

IndieGoGo, a crowd-funding platform for independent projects, is hosting the opportunity to donate towards: “Beyond the Checklist: A Feature Length Documentary Film”, which explores how lessons from industries like aviation can provide solutions to the crisis of patient deaths and injuries in healthcare. I urge you to join me in pledging towards this important documentary film which will attempt to show how training in the aviation business using evolved communication practices has lead to an incredible safety record, especially in comparison to the number of deaths attributed to medical error now occurring in the United States.

The Concept Behind the Film:

“On January 9, 2009. US Airways Flight 1549 landed in the middle of the frigid Hudson River in New York. Captain Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger and his crew – as well as ferry and Coast Guard crews – had all practiced and trained in teamwork for years. Which is why not a single passenger or crew- member was seriously injured when the plane was totally disabled when struck by a flock of Canada Geese.


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Our 60-minute film will demonstrate that healthcare can transform its culture and stem the epidemic of medical errors and injuries in the US and elsewhere. It can do this by learning lessons from the safety model and culture change movement that transformed commercial aviation over the last 30 years and that has been successfully adapted to make other high-risk industries much safer. The film “Beyond the Checklist” shows exactly how this safety model and culture can be implemented in the healthcare industry.

Take a trip on a $14 million dollar flight simulator, and see how pilots, fight attendants, ground crew, and air traffic controllers all learn to work together to make air travel safer. Sit in on training sessions that teach people on very different rungs of the health care hierarchy how to communicate so they can form quick teams and react instantly in crisis. Here, pilots aren’t only graded on how well they guide a plane during both routine flights and crises but on how well they communicate and work as a team with their crew. Flight attendants mechanics, and gate agents and many others learn to speak up when appropriate and challenge each other, as well as the captain and rather than experiencing “push back,” they are thanked for it.

“Crew Resource Management gave you a process and a language…so that if I said to you, captain I’m not comfortable with this, he had to hear that because it was done in a way that we were all trained,” recalls Nancy Burns, who was a flight attendant for 39 years both and experienced the change in culture when aviation introduced CRM. “It meant that if you spoke up they had to listen. It also meant that you had a responsibility to speak up.” Airline personnel are also encouraged to report mistakes – even serious violations – without being punished and all airlines share information about near misses, errors, and other problems to change practice and insure safety.

The film concludes by showing how the lessons of these pioneering practitioners and institutions can be implemented in every single hospital and health care facility so that every patient everywhere is safe. Each and every one of us will someday be a patient. Our lives and the lives of our loved ones depend on whether our caregivers are trained to work together as a team, can learn together to prevent mistakes, and are able to create a culture of safety in healthcare.”

Click here to learn more and donate to the Beyond the Checklist Documentary Film!


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