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Invited Commentary
Anesthesiology
July 2, 2020

Checklists for Tracheal Intubation of Critically Ill Adults

Author Affiliations
  • 1Medical Intensive Care Unit, University Medical Center New Orleans, New Orleans, Louisiana
  • 2Section of Pulmonary/Critical Care & Allergy/Immunology, Louisiana State University School of Medicine, New Orleans
JAMA Netw Open. 2020;3(7):e209511. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2020.9511

Checklist use is almost ubiquitous in life, helping us to remember tasks, groceries, and other commonly forgotten items in our daily routine. High-stakes scenarios that involve potential risk, such as piloting an aircraft, include checklists to ensure the consistent performance of agreed-on essential items that are vital for safe operation. Checklists for these items are also performed among multiple people involved in the operation to create an environment of teamwork and communication. Tracheal intubation of critically ill adults is a high-stakes procedure associated with a number of complications, such as cardiovascular collapse1 and hypoxemia2: has a number of preparatory items experts agree should always be performed; and requires a team to safely perform the procedure.3 This procedural environment has been, therefore, hypothesized to benefit from checklist use.

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