Examination of anesthetic practitioners' decisions for the design of a cognitive tool for airway management

R. Schnittker, S. D. Marshall, T. Horberry, K. Young, G. Lintern

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


The goal of this research was to examine the decisions made by anesthesia providers in emergency and routine clinical situations relating to airway management. A key function of anesthesia is to ensure oxygen can be delivered to the lungs via a patient's airway. Failure to maintain adequate oxygen levels leads to brain damage and death. The anesthetic work environment is complex. Occasionally, stressful situations occur when difficulties in airway management arise. Members of the anesthesia team must then engage in complex cognitive activities such as rapid, collaborative decision-making. It is suggested that cognitive AIDS may support decision-making in these situations, although this has not yet been evaluated empirically from a Cognitive Systems Engineering perspective. This ongoing research combined two studies using Cognitive Task Analysis methods as part of a Decision-Centered Design process: observations and Critical Decision Method interviews. These will inform subsequent research phases concerning the development and evaluation of design concepts.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1763-1767
Number of pages5
JournalProceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Annual Meeting
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2016
EventInternational Annual Meeting of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society 2016 - Washington Hilton, Washington, United States of America
Duration: 19 Sep 201623 Sep 2016
Conference number: 60th

Cite this