Outpatient Surgery Magazine

A Drug Diverter Comes Clean - Subscribe to Outpatient Surgery Magazine - December 2017

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 88 of 166

D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7 • O U T PA T I E N TS U R G E R Y. N E T • 8 9 had a few near misses with patients on the OR table, too. "As soon as you let your guard down, you end up with a fall," she says. And the patient falls were affecting more than just the hospital's numbers. "I think the nurses felt helpless," says Michael Ham, MSN, RN, CCRN, CPAN, HUP's perioperative clinical practice leader. So the OR staff did a department-wide analysis of the falls to identify trends. Then, they consulted with academic health centers, met with the hos- pital-wide falls committee and spoke with physical therapists about what strategies they should implement to avoid patient falls in the outpatient setting. After instilling those strategies, the hospital saw a 44% reduction in patient falls from 2015 to 2016, with only 7 patient falls. In 2017, that number dropped to 4. "We are constantly reinforcing and identifying how and where we can be more diligent," says Ms. Morris. Here are the 4 key ways HUP lowered its patient falls, and how you can, too. 1 Ask 3 questions to determine the patient's fall risk. During pre-op, first ask, "Have you fallen more than once in the past year or hurt yourself in a fall?" Next, "Do you feel you are at risk of falling?" And finally, "Do you have trouble dressing, groom- ing or bathing?" If the patient answers "yes" to any of those 3 ques- tions, that helps indicate whether you might need to take extra pre- cautions to prevent a fall. It's also important to consider the physio- logic effects of anesthesthetic agents and preparation for surgery, including NPO requirements, and how those factors impact a patient's fall risk. Make sure you repeat the 3 questions in post-op. If patients appear to be a falls risk, have one of your nurses stay at bedside to help them get dressed and make sure they aren't ever walking alone. Ms. Morris

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