APSF Stoelting Conference 2019 Summary

The conference brought more than 140 representatives from a diverse set of healthcare organizations, professional societies, industry, patient advocates, and clinical practices from around the globe. Clinicians from multiple specialties teamed with the unique mix of individuals to discuss topics ranging from data analytics applied to registries/datasets for the identification of high-risk patients to the use of augmented intelligence to reduce the risks of failure-to-identify and failure-to-rescue patients from severe postoperative deterioration.

A Human-Centered Design (HCD) process was used. The process engaged all participants and encouraged them to be creative in designing prototypes in technology, education, and clinical practice that might eliminate failure-to-rescue during perioperative deterioration. In total, the conference participants brainstormed 414 ideas.

The top “how might we?” challenges and idea-generation numbers were:

  • “Empower providers to deconstruct hierarchy and catalyze action”: 141 ideas
  • “Make technology a meaningful contribution to human workflow”: 88 ideas
  • “Create a culture that values all voices equally”: 77 ideas
  • “Build an environment that supports & encourages early escalation of care”: 60 ideas
  • “Make anticipating and planning for deterioration a standard workflow”: 48 ideas


Ultimately 19 prototypes emerged, categorized into 4 domain concepts:

  • Technology/Data Integration: user-interactive interfaces; automated EHR data exchange
  • Culture/Recognition: deconstructing hierarchy; team reward programs; nurturing respectful behaviors towards cultures valuing all voices equally.
  • Training: developing habits of reflection, flexibility, communication and empathy; intuition training, virtual reality simulation; role-playing and role-reversal exercises
  • System workflow/ decision support tools: cloud-based optimization of patients; centralized and dedicated teams for rapid unbiased evaluation; bringing wisdom/optimal decision-making to the bedside by anticipating and planning for deterioration

In 2020 the APSF will seek proposals associated with the prototypes in these 4 domains for competitive development and research funding. The goal is to support projects that can be evaluated in clinical practices for their ability to reduce failure-to-rescue rates associated with perioperative deterioration.