New task force to tackle wrong site, wrong IOL surgery as first initiative

January 14, 2008

San Fransisco-A new task force has been formed by the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO).

San Fransisco-A new task force that will focus on physician competency, patient care, and safety, the Performance Improvement Taskforce, has been formed by the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) with the assistance of the American Board of Ophthalmology (ABO) and the Ophthalmic Mutual Insurance Co..

The task force will create education-related activities and tools to help physicians identify and measure areas of improvement using evidence-based and common-sense protocols. The first mission of the task force is to address IOL implant surgery performed on the wrong eye or with the wrong IOL. Of the 106 cases covering 23 years studied, such mistakes were the most common ones made by physicians and their teams, according to a retrospective study in the Archives of Ophthalmology that documents surgical confusion.

"Mistakes are extremely uncommon when it comes to wrong site or wrong IOL implant, but they are serious," said Joseph Caprioli, MD, FACS, chairman of the task force and professor of ophthalmology at the Jules Stein Eye Institute of the University of California, Los Angeles. "Simple steps that begin in the office and end in the operating room can help ophthalmologists eliminate rare occurrences of serious mistakes."