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Basics of Nontechnical Skills

Last Updated: November 16, 2018

Introduction

The technical demands of high-stakes, high-risk professions such as neurosurgery, aviation, and nuclear power management are vast and ever more complex. As a result, current training programs have evolved to address technical skills in these fields in great detail.

However, although most pilots, for example, are highly skilled and well-trained practitioners, several high-profile aviation disasters have been attributed to errors in cockpit communication or cognitive pitfalls than to the pilot’s lack of training or expertise. The civil aviation community has responded to these incidents with a steadfast dedication to training in nontechnical aspects of aviation. Similarly, it has been found that up to 43% of errors during surgery and 27% of claims against health care organiz...