The “teaching time-out”: a novel framework for surgical education

The “teaching time-out”: a novel framework for surgical education

Can J Surg 2020;63(3):E208-E210 | PDF | Appendix

Keegan Guidolin, MD; Han Yan, MD; Fayez Quereshy, MD, MBA


In the decade since its inception, the World Health Organization’s surgical safety checklist has fundamentally changed the conduct of surgery the world over. A critical component of the checklist — the “pause” or “time-out” — requires all operating room staff to stop other activities and together review critical information about the case to ensure that nothing is missed. Surgical trainees in Canada are transitioning to a competency-based medical education model; a core aspect of this model requires trainees to advocate for their own learning goals. We propose the use of a detailed and formalized preoperative pause as a means to enable superior and more targeted intraoperative learning for surgical trainees.

Accepted Sept. 17, 2019

Affiliations: From the Division of General Surgery, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ont. (Guidolin, Quereshy); the Division of Neurosurgery, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ont. (Yan); and the Toronto Western Hospital, University Health Network, Toronto, Ont. (Quereshy).

Competing interests: None declared.

Contributors: All authors contributed substantially to the conception, writing and revision of this article and approved the final version for publication.

DOI: 10.1503/cjs.005919

Correspondence to: K. Guidolin, 2075 Bayview Ave, Room H317, Toronto ON M4N 3M5,