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April 2021
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Healthcare employment up in March

Editor's Note Overall healthcare employment in the US was up in March to a seasonally adjusted 15,935,300 workers, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported on April 2. That’s up 11,500 jobs since February and down 462,100 jobs compared to a year ago. Hospital employment was still down 600 jobs, the…

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By: Judy Mathias
April 7, 2021
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Survey: 21% of health system’s faculty, staff, trainees considered quitting during COVID-19

Editor's Note This survey finds that 21% of faculty, staff, and trainees at University of Utah Health, Salt Lake City, have considered quitting their jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic, and 30% considered reducing hours because of COVID-19-related stress. Other findings of the survey (5,030 respondents), which looked at childcare, career…

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By: Judy Mathias
April 6, 2021
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CDC: Risk of getting COVID-19 from surfaces is low

Editor's Note In a science brief based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC’s) analysis of the latest available data, the agency says the risk of getting COVID-19 from surfaces “is generally considered to be low.” The CDC noted that: The risk of COVID-19 infection via surface transmission…

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By: Judy Mathias
April 6, 2021
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CDC: Fully vaccinated people are safe for domestic travel

Editor's Note The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), on April 2, updated its information for travelers to say people who are fully vaccinated can travel safely within the US. The update notes that fully vaccinated travelers do not have to be tested before or after travel unless required…

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By: Judy Mathias
April 5, 2021
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HHS report finds US hospitals in crisis

Editor's report A new report released by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Inspector General (OIG) on March 23 details how the COVID-19 pandemic has created new problems and worsened existing issues at US hospitals, leaving staff frustrated, exhausted, and burned out. Among the problems outlined…

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By: Judy Mathias
March 25, 2021
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Sexist, racial/ethnic microaggressions against surgeons, anesthesiologists

Editor's Note The findings of this study from the Southern California Permanente Medical Group, Irvine, suggest that there is a high prevalence of microaggressions that stigmatize female and racial/ethnic-minority surgeons and anesthesiologists and contribute to unhealthy surgical workplaces and physician burnout. Of 588 (259 female, 329 male) respondents to a…

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By: Judy Mathias
March 25, 2021
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The Joint Commission releases 2020 sentinel event statistics

Editor's Note The Joint Commission, on March 24, released its sentinel event statistics for 2020, which totaled 794. The top five most frequently reported events were: Falls: 170 Unintended retention of a foreign object: 106 Suicide: 81 Delay in treatment: 76 Wrong-site surgery: 68. The Joint Commission’s Office of Quality…

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By: Judy Mathias
March 25, 2021
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Protective effects of surgical masks, face shields, combination of both

Editor's Note In this study from Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, researchers found that surgical masks alone surpassed protection by face shields, and a combination of both was similar to surgical masks alone. Researchers simulated human speaking to examine the transmission of aerosols using blood agar plates (simulating…

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By: Judy Mathias
March 24, 2021
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Kentucky is third state to enact legislation on surgical smoke evacuation

Editor's Note AORN announced on March 24 that Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear had signed into law new legislation that will require licensed hospitals and ambulatory surgery centers to adopt and implement policies to prevent human exposure to surgical smoke. AORN’s government affairs team and Kentucky AORN members worked closely with…

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By: Judy Mathias
March 24, 2021
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Breathe easier with the right respiratory protection

The COVID-19 pandemic has underscored the importance of respiratory protection in healthcare settings and in the community. Healthcare workers at high risk of infection need the most effective respiratory protection, and not all surgical masks and respirators are alike. Checking for proper fit, donning and doffing correctly, and following manufacturers’…

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By: Judith M. Mathias, MA, RN
March 19, 2021
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