Home Issues OR Manager [February, 2009]

A perspective on OR laminar air flow

This perspective elaborates on recent study findings published in the November 2008 Annals of Surgery, which conclude there may be little benefit from vertical laminar air flow (LAF) for preventing surgical site infections (SSIs) in orthopedic and general surgical procedures. The investigation by Christian Brandt, MD, and colleagues from Germany…

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By: OR Manager
February 1, 2009
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National study probes ties between 'best practices,' surgical infection

What distinguishes hospitals with low levels of surgical infection? What characteristics and practices make a difference? In an effort to identify best practices nationally, the American College of Surgeons (ACS) has reported new research using its rigorous methodology for studying surgical outcomes. Among the major findings, hospitals with a lower…

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By: Pat Patterson
February 1, 2009
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When an MD has a substance abuse problem

Somebody's going to get hurt." It took that statement for one OR director to get administration and the medical staff to take action when an anesthesiologist was abusing cocaine. "They had been tiptoeing around it," she says. Ultimately, the physician was caught in the act. That was more than 20…

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By: OR Manager
February 1, 2009
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Managing ORs in tough economic times

Of all the things that keep health care leaders awake at night, 3 stand out in these tough economic times—money, quality, and manpower. Surgical services leaders who understand these issues and can help their administration address them will be in a strong position to help their organizations survive. Connie Curran,…

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By: OR Manager
February 1, 2009
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Joint Commission aligning with CoPs

After a 15-year absence, language on the RN circulator in the OR could be back in the Joint Commission hospital accreditation standards. It's one of the changes the Joint Commission is making to bring its requirements in line with the Medicare Conditions of Participation (CoPs). The changes, posted Jan 5,…

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By: OR Manager
February 1, 2009
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HHS launches action plan to prevent HAIs

The US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has launched an action plan with 5-year targets for preventing health care-associated infections (HAIs). The plan was developed by an HHS steering committee involving a number of federal agencies. "This plan will serve as our roadmap on how the department addresses…

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By: OR Manager
February 1, 2009
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Giving patients timely, accurate pricing

What's your price for a colonoscopy?" When a patient calls your hospital for pricing, who takes the call? Will the patient receive a clear answer quickly so he or she will know how much he or she is likely to owe out of pocket? These calls are increasing as patients…

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By: Pat Patterson
February 1, 2009
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Making the case for specialty teams

Teams have long been discussed by OR managers as a way to improve physician and staff satisfaction. It makes sense to have teams of the same staff working with surgeons in the same specialty consistently. But a variety of management issues arise. How do you balance the need for specialist…

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By: OR Manager
February 1, 2009
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Managers look at call innovations to help staff with work-life balance

As surgical services leaders think about attracting and keeping a new generation of staff, work-life balance is coming into sharper focus. In surgical services, work-life balance tends to center on call. Staff need to be available 24/7 for emergencies. Yet younger staff are not as likely to accept call as…

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By: Pat Patterson
February 1, 2009
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Ten tips to improve your ASC's coding

First part of a 2-part series. Is your ambulatory surgery center (ASC) having claims denied? Are you missing out on revenue or opening yourself to compliance risks because of coding problems? Top ASC coding and billing problems Unbundling Separate procedures Upcoding and undercoding Diagnosis coding issues Proper modifier usage Claim…

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By: OR Manager
February 1, 2009
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