Surgical Setups-Do they really just disappear?

14 Jul Surgical Setups-Do they really just disappear?

Stressed Nurse                   Instrument Trays

Does this happen elsewhere?

You collect all the equipment required for the next days surgical cases, this includes the surgical instrument trays, camera, scopes, dressings, prosthesis, sutures, local anaesthetic, sutures etc, all specific to the surgeons preference and the OR, only to find that between the 8 hours of lapsed time when you went home to sleep, the surgical tray and camera are missing. You only realise this after your morning wake up coffee, and just before you start to scrub, (you only gathered all the equipment 8 hours ago, where would it disappear too in that time frame)….hmmm… wonder and hope your circulator is messing with you…but no, not this time, @#$%! you start to panic!

You then discover there was an emergency case and they used parts of your setup!

The surgical tray will not be available until the sterilisation technicians arrive and another team has already opened the only available second tray. So what do you do, juggle patients and do the second case first or wait it out. But wait the second patient has not arrived in the hospital…and fasting time?

It will only take approximately 1.5hrs to decontaminate, repack, sterilize and cool down…what!

Has anyone mentioned this to the surgeon, or is this left up to you… Looks like it is going to be a long day…may have to cancel that long awaited hot date….

Then an idea… can we borrow from another local hospital. Great idea, yes we can, or maybe not, depending on hospital policy…

I think we have all been in this situation and the outcome depends on many factors. I think it is heart warming to know we understand the pressures and stress of this environment and we all attempt to do the best we can, with the options we have.

Never underestimate the impact you have on your patients’.




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