Clean Cut

Surgical site infection is a major threat in low-resource setting operating rooms, where rates are double those reported in high-income countries.

Patients suffer, families grieve, and hospital systems are strained beyond capacity.  But to date, there has been no best practice strategy for addressing this crisis.

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Over the next 18 months, this is set to change.  Lifebox is developing a new technical programme aimed at reducing the incidence of surgical infection through simple and scalable interventions.


Introducing CLEAN CUT: Checklist Expansion for Antisepsis and Infection Control – Customization, Use, and Training.

Piloting in Ethiopia and led by Thomas Weiser, Lifebox trustee and surgeon at Stanford Health Care, the goal is to develop a set of standards that address the most fundamental and life-saving aspects of safe, clean surgery.  From skin decontamination to sterile practice, instrument sterilization to antibiotics, we’ll be working with local champions to develop a programme that begins in one hospital and expands to support safer practice across whole country systems.

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“This project is an extension of what we began during our work with the World Health Organization (WHO) in creating and implementing the Surgical Safety Checklist,” explained Dr Weiser. “We intend this to be the next step of a concerted effort to fully deploy the Checklist, broaden the scope of work, and to make perioperative care safer for patients everywhere.”

CLEAN CUT is funded thanks to a $500,000 grant from GE Foundation, as part of its commitment to scaling up healthcare in East Africa.  For more information, click here.