Outpatient Surgery Magazine

Special Edition: Staff & Patient Safety - October 2020 - Subscribe to Outpatient Surgery Magazine

Outpatient Surgery Magazine, providing current information on Surgical Services, Surgical Facility Administration, Outpatient Surgery News and Trends, OR Excellence and more.

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Page 37 of 43

"We effectively manage fluids during shoulder cases, but some surgeons don't like using the fluid-collection pouches during other procedures," says Ms. Fredette. Her team therefore sometimes uses towels in which instruments are wrapped during the steriliza- tion process to sop up fluid runoff. It's an effective and economic method, but it's not the safest option for nurses, who have to bend down and pull heavy, water-logged towels off the floor before heaving them into the dirty laundry cart. A better option — and one Ms. Fredette's staff also employs — is placing fluid-wicking devices around the surgical table to keep the floor dry and safe for surgical team members. Slipping is just one risk surgical teams face dur- ing busy days is bustling facilities when their atten- tion is often on paperwork, patient care and pulling supplies — everything but where they're walking, which they often do quickly. A stray cord or mis- placed piece of equipment could be enough to trip up a hustling staff member. Tripping risks have increased as cases continue to shift to outpatient ORs, which are often packed with the latest devices and equipment needed to perform procedures that are growing in complexity. Rolling in extra equipment can clutter walking lanes and limit maneuverability around the table, creat- ing congestion that puts staff at risk if they don't watch where they're going. Consolidating equipment is the sim- plest way to keep floors clear of tripping hazards, says Anjali Joseph, PhD, EDAC, director of the Center for Health Facilities Design and Training at Clemson (S.C.) University. Dr. Joseph is involved in a project funded by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality to reimagine current OR designs with the goal of creating safer spaces. She spends a lot of time watching surgical teams in action and asking them about their ergonomic needs. "OR clutter is a big concern based on our observations and conversations," says Dr. Joseph. She points to several space-saving solutions that can help keep walkways clear in ORs where every square foot is valuable real estate: • Equipment booms. Floor- or ceiling-mounted booms limit the number of video towers and equip- ment carts needed around the surgical table. Booms also let you adapt to evolving equipment needs by easily changing the configuration of ORs over time. "But booms present their own challenges," says Dr. Joseph. "They're expensive, staff often bump their heads on mounted screens and equipment never quite aligns as well as you'd like." If booms aren't in your budget or are an impracti- cal add, Dr. Joseph suggests making sure equipment carts and instrument tables are out of high-traffic areas and away from the pathway where patients are wheeled into and out of ORs. Also be sure to position carts in large enough spaces where open doors won't obstruct pathways of movement. • Divided rooms. Dr. Joseph also says organizing ORs into four work areas — anesthesia at the head of the table, sterile zones on both sides of the table and a circulation zone outside the sterile field — ensures staff work in dedicated areas, keeps their steps to a minimum and limits movement during 3 8 • S U P P L E M E N T T O O U T P A T I E N T S U R G E R Y M A G A Z I N E • O C T O B E R 2 0 2 0 OFF TO THE SIDE Keep cords organized and out of high-traffic areas. Piedmont Outpatient Surgery Center

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