Blogs

One of the questions I often received prior to the first annual spine safety summit in 2016 is “why organize another Spine Surgery conference?” My answer is inevitably, “how could we not?”

The time could not be more urgent. At every talk I give, I always like to put the audience in the right mindset, which is “how will the next patient be harmed?” Somewhere out there, there’s a patient coming to your waiting room or in a Read More...

Surgical site infections (SSI) following spine instrumentation surgery is associated with increased morbidity and healthcare costs. Despite the development of consensus-based best practices to prevent surgical site infection, there is still considerable variation in minimizing modifiable risk factors. The payment approach known as “pay-for-performance” (P4P) has gained traction as a strategy for promoting quality improvement (QI) by rewarding clinicians who meet performance expectations with respect to health care Read More...
Team Approach to Spine Surgery -Michael G. Vitale, MD, MPH
Without doubt, the impact of complications like surgical site infection (SSI) can have a tremendous burden on patients, their families, surgeons, hospitals, and society as a whole. As with most complications in healthcare, SSI should be thought of as the result of a combination of host, technique, systems and culture challenges. When multiple defects accumulate, SSI overwhelms the various countermeasures and a clinical infection ensures. When the defects all align, it allows for these factors to allow passage through the Read More...
Surgeon Athletes–Lessons from Cycling -Michael G. Vitale, MD, MPH
How Lessons from Cycling Can Inform Efforts at Continuous Improvement: A recent conversation with an avid cycler helped me draw interesting parallels between how sport and the pursuit of skill so often intersects with our mission to make care better in Read More...
Developing the Wrong Site Surgery Checklist: Far too often, healthcare fails to provide the level of reliability that is expected around a patient’s sense of quality. Even meeting quality and safe patient care 99.9% of the time may not be enough. For reference, if 99.9% was an appropriate threshold, Amazon would still be failing to deliver 1,600 packages per day and the US Postal Service would be losing 506,000 parcels per Read More...