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New service lines can create opportunities for ORs

As hospital administrators face shrinking operating margins, OR leaders are being called upon to create innovative approaches for boosting revenue. Adding a new service line is one option, but it carries both risks and rewards. Only by careful analysis and follow-through can OR leaders hope to tip the balance to…

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By: Cynthia Saver, MS, RN
July 23, 2018
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Validation and verification needed to ensure medical device safety

Sometimes surgeons ask to have nonmedical devices sterilized, such as spoons, hockey pucks, and fish hooks. Healthcare staff may want to accommodate their requests, but there are times when they cannot do so. A central service (CS) should only sterilize medical devices that have undergone validation testing, which demonstrates that…

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By: Susan Klacik, BS, CRCST, CHL, CIS, ACE, FCS
July 25, 2018
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Don’t let burnout get the best of you

Burnout and resiliency are addressed at nearly every major healthcare conference these days, and research on burnout ties it to adverse effects on healthcare providers as well as their patients. According to Bernadette Melnyk, PhD, RN, APRN-CNP, FNAAP, FNAP, FAAN, vice president for health promotion and university chief wellness officer,…

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By: Elizabeth Wood
July 25, 2018
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How do you handle social determinants?

Social and demographic factors play a huge role in any patient’s overall health and recovery from surgery. When treating patients who lack health insurance, family support, or language/literacy skills—among many other possible disadvantages—providing safe patient care can extend well beyond clinical aspects. OR managers and their staffs may take on…

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By: Elizabeth Wood
July 23, 2018
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PAT makeover enhances patient and provider satisfaction

Not all hospitals have a preadmission testing (PAT) process, and even when they do, communication breakdowns and inefficiencies can make the process ineffective. Recognizing that the PAT process at Yale New Haven Hospital, New Haven, Connecticut, needed a makeover was the first step in launching an improvement project that led…

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By: Cynthia Saver, MS, RN
July 23, 2018
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Sharps inflicting increased wounds in the OR

Injuries from needlesticks—whether from disposable syringes, IV catheters, or blood collection devices—accounted for more than 30% of all sharps injuries in 2016, especially among nurses. Injuries from skin injections alone accounted for 25.7% of all sharps injuries that year. And, for the first time, injuries occurring from suturing during procedures…

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By: OR Manager
July 23, 2018
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Vigilance and diligence needed to enforce hand hygiene

Hungarian obstetrician Ingvar Semmelweis recognized the link between hand washing and childbirth fever in the mid-1800s. During his lifetime, this theory was often ignored or mocked, but ultimately hand washing was scientifically proven to prevent infections. Almost two centuries later, hand washing still reigns as the queen of infection prevention,…

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By: Janet M. Boivin, BSN, BSJ, RN
July 23, 2018
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Change PAT protocols to improve patient throughput

Preadmission testing (PAT) has been shown to reduce day-of-surgery delays and unnecessary testing that drive up the cost of healthcare. But it takes time and patience to put an effective PAT process in place. Sharon Ulep, MBB, CMCA, CPHQ, principal for healthcare strategy and consulting, Plante Moran, Southfield, Michigan, who…

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By: Cynthia Saver, MS, RN
July 23, 2018
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Elevate your emotional intelligence at OR Manager Conference

The old adage, “Laughter is the best medicine,” is worth adopting as a daily mantra to offset the pressures of the OR environment. Each year, the OR Manager Conference ends on an upbeat note with an inspirational and often humorous closing session. This year’s presentation, on Wednesday, September 19, is…

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By: Elizabeth Wood
July 23, 2018
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Full-scale mockup clears path to efficient new ORs

Anyone who has been involved in an OR design and construction project knows it is a labor-intensive, time-consuming effort—and usually far from seamless. There’s almost always something no one thinks of until it is too late, and the staff must learn to live with the flaws. But a multidisciplinary team…

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By: Judith M. Mathias, MA, RN
July 23, 2018
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