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Over the past decade, through his writing in The New Yorker magazine and his books Complications and Better, Atul Gawande has made a name for himself as a writer of exquisitely crafted meditations on the problems and challenges of modern medicine. His latest book, The Checklist Manifesto, begins on familiar ground, with his experiences as a surgeon. But before long it becomes clear that he is really interested in a problem that afflicts virtually every aspect of the modern world--and that is how professionals deal with the increasing complexity of their responsibilities. It has been years since I read a book so powerful and so thought-provoking.
Gawande begins by making a distinction between errors of ignorance (mistakes we make because we don't know enough), and errors of ineptitude (mistakes we made because we don’t make proper use of what we know). Failure in the modern world, he writes, is really about the second of these errors, and he walks us through a series of examples from medicine showing how the routine tasks of surgeons have now become so incredibly complicated that mistakes of one kind or another are virtually inevitable: it's just too easy for an otherwise competent doctor to miss a step, or forget to ask a key question or, in the stress and pressure of the moment, to fail to plan properly for every eventuality. Gawande then visits with pilots and the people who build skyscrapers and comes back with a solution. Experts need checklists--literally--written guides that walk them through the key steps in any complex procedure. In the last section of the book, Gawande shows how his research team has taken this idea, developed a safe surgery checklist, and applied it around the world, with staggering success.
The danger, in a review as short as this, is that it makes Gawande’s book seem narrow in focus or prosaic in its conclusions. It is neither. Gawande is a gorgeous writer and storyteller, and the aims of this book are ambitious. Gawande thinks that the modern world requires us to revisit what we mean by expertise: that experts need help, and that progress depends on experts having the humility to concede that they need help. --Malcolm Gladwell
If there is one thing to take away from the book it is the value of a checklist. The reason that the book received a 3-star rating was it seemed that the author was attempting to... Read morePublished 10 hours ago by epetzoldt
As an EHS professional, I spend a lot of time trying to get ahead of potential safety issues in the industrial setting. Read morePublished 20 hours ago by Kenna Coltman
BLUF: Read this book if your looking to increase your productivity. Automate your life to increase your creativeness, reduce stress and mitigate risks. Read morePublished 21 hours ago by Paul
You wouldn't think a book about something as basic as a checklist would be interesting, but the author really breaks it down for the reader in many ways how important it can be and... Read morePublished 1 day ago by fashionista student
I read this book as I've hear a lot of people refer to it. Although the reader is presented with riveting case studies, the premise of the book is exactly as the title attests.... Read morePublished 4 days ago by Misha
Dr. Gawande always has something relevant to contribute. Continuous quality improvement measures has much to learn from him.Published 6 days ago by Elizabeth Royal
I was very pleased with timely delivery and quality of used book. Great Job!Published 8 days ago by Rose Reed
I thought this book was interesting, but as a clinician, I already have implemented these ideas into my practice. Read morePublished 9 days ago by Margaret Chizek