AHRQ Safety Program for Surgery

This ongoing project will result in a toolkit for use in surgical units to improve safety culture and reduce surgical site infections and other complications.

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About This Project

Millions of people around the world undergo surgery each year. Approximately 25 percent of these patients develop complications after inpatient operations, including healthcare-associated infections (HAIs).* HAIs are among the most common complications in surgery patients, and they are largely preventable. To address this problem, AHRQ funded a 3-year project called the AHRQ Safety Program for Surgery to develop and implement resources to help surgical units apply the Comprehensive Unit-based Safety Program (CUSP) to improve safety culture and reduce surgical site infections and other complications.

This project is expected to be completed in summer 2015. At the conclusion of the project, the resources used by project participants will be refined and compiled into a field-tested toolkit that others can use to keep surgery patients safer.

Project Partners

This project is being conducted through a partnership that brings together subject matter experts and providers in the field. Partners for this project include—

  • Johns Hopkins Medicine Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality.
  • University of Pennsylvania.
  • American College of Surgeons.

For more information, email SUSP@JHMI.edu.


* World Health Organization, "Why Safe Surgery Is Important," http://www.who.int/patientsafety/challenge/safe.surgery/en/

Page last reviewed February 2015
Page originally created February 2015
Internet Citation: AHRQ Safety Program for Surgery. Content last reviewed February 2015. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD. http://www.ahrq.gov/professionals/quality-patient-safety/hais/tools/surgery/index.html