Surgery/Specialties

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January 2021
Home Surgical/Anesthesia > Surgery/Specialties

Joint Commission approves four new EPs for office-based surgery

Editor's Note The Joint Commission, on January 13, announced that it had approved four new elements of performance (EPs) for office-based surgery practices that prescribe medication. The EPs for Medication Management Standard MM.04.01.01, which will become effective July 1, address the following: Having a written policy that identifies specific medication…

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By: Judy Mathias
January 14, 2021
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The sharp end of safety: The fight to reduce needlestick injuries

Each December, the international medical community marks Sharps Safety Awareness Month, which serves as a powerful reminder of the significant risks from injuries caused by needlesticks and surgical sharps faced by surgeons, nurses, and other clinicians in their daily lives. Every needlestick injury incurred in the OR comes with a…

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By: Eric Davis, MS, BSN, RN, CNOR
December 15, 2020
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Effect of intubation barrier devices on aerosol exposure

Editor's Note Barrier devices used for intubation may reduce operator exposure to infectious droplets and aerosols, but there is wide variation in aerosol containment, this study finds. Fully enclosed barrier devices reduced vapor and aerosol content in the area of the operator. If no barrier device was used, aerosol content…

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By: Judy Mathias
December 14, 2020
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ASA, APSF issue guidance on surgery, anesthesia for COVID-19 patients who have recovered

Editor's Note The American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) and Anesthesia Patient Safety Foundation (APSF) issued a joint statement December 8 on performing elective surgery and anesthesia on COVID-19 patients who have recovered from the virus. The statement notes that: In general, all non-urgent procedures should be delayed until the patient…

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By: Judy Mathias
December 10, 2020
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CMS releases final 2021 Medicare payment rule for ASCs, HOPDs

Editor's Note The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on December 2 released its 2021 final payment rule for ASCs and hospital outpatient departments (HOPDs). CMS has finalized the addition of 11 procedures to the ASC covered procedures list, including total hip arthroplasty, autochondrocyte knee implant, and open complex…

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By: Judy Mathias
December 3, 2020
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CMS releases final PFS for 2021, surgeons say rule jeopardizes care

Editor's Note The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on December 1 released its 2021 final rule for the Medicare physician fee schedule (PFS), which expands telehealth services and increases payments for primary care and chronic disease management. The rule also reduces payments for surgeons, emergency physicians, and other…

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By: Judy Mathias
December 2, 2020
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Effect of cancelling elective surgery on ICU bed, ventilator capacity

Editor's Note This study led by researchers at the Icahn School of Medicine, Mount Sinai, New York City, finds that patients having elective surgery make up a small fraction of ICU bed and mechanical ventilation use in New York State. The researchers reviewed 5 years of New York State data…

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By: Judy Mathias
December 1, 2020
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66 hospitals suspending elective surgical procedures

Editor's Note In response to an increase in hospitalized COVID-19 patients, 66 hospitals have postponed or cancelled elective surgical procedures in an effort to free up space and ensure enough staff and PPE are available, the November 24 Becker’s Hospital Review reports. All of the hospitals are in the Midwest…

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By: Judy Mathias
November 30, 2020
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Action needed now to meet future demand for nurses

Release of the National Academy of Medicine’s (NAM) report, Future of Nursing 2020-2030, has been delayed until spring 2021. The report is expected to address “newly emerging evidence related to the COVID-19 global pandemic and include recommendations regarding the role of nurses in responding to the crisis,” according to the…

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By: Elizabeth Wood
November 17, 2020
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Patient-preference playlists improve pre- and postop experiences

Streaming music apps and access to music through smartphones and similar devices make it easy to provide many different genres of music and modalities that can ease surgical patients’ fears. The use of music in both pre- and postoperative settings has been extensively researched, but less is known about how…

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By: Judith M. Mathias, MA, RN
November 17, 2020
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