Nurse Anesthetists Take Patient Safety Message Global on World Health Day


Park Ridge, Ill.—In recognition of World Health Day on April 7, the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists (AANA) is promoting patient safety by encouraging Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs) and others to donate to Lifebox, a not-for-profit organization that provides pulse oximeters—a vital piece of healthcare equipment—to needy healthcare facilities around the world.
A pulse oximeter is a device that is usually attached to a patient’s earlobe or fingertip during surgery to measure the oxygen saturation of arterial blood. The Lifebox project grew out of a global initiative by members of the World Health Organization (WHO) that were seeking cost-effective ways to make surgery safer.
“Ensuring patient safety is one of the primary goals of the AANA and CRNAs,” said AANA President Debra Malina, CRNA, DNSc, MBA.  ”So when the Lifebox project caught our attention, we jumped at the opportunity to expand our outreach globally.”
The Lifebox mission is to “ensure that no patient dies because a pulse oximeter and basic safety checks were not used during surgery.” For every $250 in donations, Lifebox provides a pulse oximeter, rechargeable batteries, universal finger probe, AC/DC adapter charger and cradle, protective case, educational materials, and a copy of the WHO Surgical Safety Checklist to eligible clinicians/facilities in low income/low resource areas. For more information, visit
World Health Day, a global observance created by the WHO, is designed to draw attention to particular priorities in global health. Founded on April 7, 1948, the WHO’s accomplishments have been significant, including the global eradication of smallpox and the implementation of a wide range of public health strategies.  Today, 193 countries belong to the WHO, and the organization continues striving to improve healthcare for impoverished people around the world.