Sharing ideas on Risk, Human Performance, Teams and Leaders

737 Max – Lessons for Healthcare?

Published: Fri 15 Mar 2019
One of the things that struck me this week was the developing contagion following the tragic air accident in Ethiopia involving a similar aircraft to the Indonesian crash last year.

One of the things that struck me this week was the developing contagion following the tragic air accident in Ethiopia involving a similar aircraft to the Indonesian crash last year. Within days every 737 Max has now been grounded until the manufacturers and regulators are satisfied that they are safe to continue. More information has surfaced in the media about some changes that had been recommended following the accident last year.

Additional Training

An interesting interview on BBC Radio 4 with an American Airlines pilot suggested that some American Airlines pilots had had additional training and some alternative equipment that made it easier do manage the flight of the aircraft. What is interesting is that all this has surfaced within a week because of media interest. What is also likely is that prior to this sharing of knowledge, some may have known but not shared information widely enough.

I wonder whether time will show that there was wilful blindness which slowed down the dissemination of information or just poor systems for dissemination.

Parallels

There are many parallels with healthcare and many examples when we look at reports following Bristol, Mid Staffs etc.

In this respect I am looking forward to hearing Margaret Heffernan on day 2 of the forthcoming Risky Business Conference in June. Her book “Wilful Blindness” presents some fascinating insights into the dilemmas we all face, and the competing interests involved when we talk about safety.

Author: John Tiernan