An Oxford University research team has merged two competing surgical safety theories to enhance patient safety during a procedure. One school of thought believed that working as a team made surgeons and staff more effective and less prone to mistakes during a procedure. However, another thought was that creating better protocols would make patients safer. By combining the two ideas together, surgeons may be able to get the best of both paradigms.

Research suggests that those who were trained to work as a team were more motivated to follow safety protocols, but they were unable to change how they worked. Those who were trained to follow specific procedures were not motivated to find ways to increase patient safety. Those who were trained in both areas were more likely to take on ambitious safety programs and ask outside experts for help.

Asking for help may be important because the data showed that frontline medical staff did not have the time to focus on patient care and patient safety simultaneously. However, they did possess a lot of local knowledge that could help contribute to any changes that needed to be made. Therefore, it would be necessary for experts to work with these staff members to create safer environments for patients.

Those who are harmed by a surgical error often see their original condition worsened, with the result that they are forced to incur additional medical expenses and miss more time from work. A person who has been harmed in such a manner may want to have the assistance of a medical malpractice attorney in seeking compensation for those expenses and other losses.