Lessons Learned From the Death of Joan Rivers

Kenneth P. Rothfield, MD, System Vice President and Chief Medical and Quality Officer, Saint Vincent’s Healthcare

The unnecessary death of Joan Rivers served as a wake up call for surgical centers and patients. This presentation reviews not only what happened to Joan Rivers, but also what killed her, with an emphasis on “VIP Syndrome,” shortcomings in safety culture and training for uncommon emergencies. The presentation concludes with a four-point action plan for participants to execute in their own organizations.


Eyes Wide Shut: Taboo issues in the OR

Jan Kleinhesselink, Chief Quality Officer, Lincoln Surgical Hospitaland and Carmen Lester, Chief Clinical Officer, Lincoln Surgical Hospital

In this presentation we will present real life situations that challenge your leadership skills and critical thinking. It’s a game of chance; will you make the right call? We have found that surgical leaders and staff struggle with dilemmas that don’t happen every day but can have a serious impact on your organization. We will focus on unusual but frequently occurring challenges. Some of the topics might be considered taboo others are strange and some are downright dreadful. In the end, we will provide you with the tools to help you navigate the muddy waters of not-so-common events.


Building Employee Engagement from the Ground Up

Patty Andrews, RN, BSN, MHA, CNOR

Optimum, efficient Operating Room utilization is the cornerstone of a financially productive department. A well designed and managed block schedule creates the framework for a highly dynamic process. This presentation will review industry principles surrounding the creation and maintenance of a block schedule, and key points of an effective policy and procedure.


Building Strategies for a Successful Surgical Smoke Evacuation Program

Donna Watson, RN, Medtronic

Although the long-term effects for health care workers exposed to surgical smoke remains unknown, there is a need to be proactive and prevent any potential harm. Engineering controls and personal protective equipment should be used to protect all staff and patients from exposure to smoke byproducts. A critical step in minimizing exposure is to increase awareness of the environmental hazards related to surgical smoke and aerosols produced during operative and invasive procedures.

This course will describe essentials for developing, implementing, and auditing a smoke evacuation program. Setting up a smoke evacuation program requires dedication from key stakeholders to implement team strategies that work toward reducing and eliminating surgical smoke to create a sustainable program.


Cleaning and Care of Surgical Instruments: A Shared Responsibility

Cynthia Spry, MA, MS, RN, CNOR(E), SPDT

Today’s complex surgical instruments present unique challenges for reprocessing. Recent outbreaks of infection and death related to inadequately reprocessed surgical instruments have put instrument reprocessing front and center with health care professionals, regulatory and accrediting agencies, and the general public. Instrument reprocessing is a shared responsibility between members of the surgical team and sterile processing personnel. This session will identify who is responsible for what and will describe evidence-based best practices for cleaning and care of surgical instruments. Finally, opportunities to improve communication and collaboration between operating room and sterile processing personnel will be addressed.


The UDI and the OR


The Unique Device Identifier (UDI) ruling was finalized in September 2013. Associating the UDI with each patient is the goal of the UDI. The Office of the National Coordinator (ONC) and Meaningful Use Stage 3 require submission of the UDI to the patient medical record beginning January 2018. CMS is working toward updating the billing to capture this information as a requirement for reimbursement. Physicians, patients, registries, and the government want to understand the use of the products for various reasons, including what implant was used for a patient in case there is a need for replacement. This presentation will discuss the role of UDI in the OR and the broader spectrum of the UDI and its intent.


The Educator’s Treasure Chest: Pearls and Other Jewels for Competency Assessment

Dawn Whiteside,MSN, RN, CNOR, RNFA, Nurse Manager, Credentialing and Education Development, Competency and Credentialing Institute

Argh you ready to transform your box of tools into a treasure chest of ideas? The pirate’s booty has 11 different jewels of wisdom to use for thinking outside the box. Each jewel represents a competency verification tool. Engage the staff to participate in important content review and verifying competence. We will apply the 4 Cs – Carrot, Clarity, Color and Cut – to the competency assessment process. At the end of the session you will have a better understanding for identifying the Carrot (goal or reward), Clarity (clearly written objectives), Color (assign a color to each tool), and Cut (create a puzzle to develop a fun process).


It Takes a Village to Raise a Department: Why facilities fail without CS/SPD support staff

Weston “Hank” Balch, CRCST, CIS, CHL

The sterile processing industry today is undergoing a level of media and regulatory scrutiny as never before. With almost weekly headlines of serious quality issues with surgical instrument trays, many health care facilities are giving a fresh look at what is needed to get these departments back on track. This session will cover the critical role that support staff can play in raising a CS/SPD department from a safety concern to key driver of surgical quality.


Health Policy Changes Under the Trump Administration

Ken Perez, Vice President of Healthcare Policy, Omnicell

After exploring the audience’s feelings about health policy changes, this presentation presents various frameworks and facts regarding the ACA, the current political battleground in Washington, D.C., and health policy changes under the Trump Administration. Last, it draws conclusions about what will be unchanged, what changes are highly likely, and what remains uncertain, and it offers advice for health care provider organizations.


Thoughts on Leadership

James X. Stobinski, PhD, RN, CNOR, CSSM, Acting CEO, Competency and Credentialing Institute

The goal of the presentation is to enhance the knowledge and skills of nurse leaders working in the OR, especially in the areas of leadership and management. The value of lifelong learning will be stressed as well as the need for flexibility and a willingness to adapt. Contrasts will be drawn between the challenges faced by other industries and the changes now being experienced in American health care.


Capacity Planning: How to get the right fit

Anne Roy, JD, BS, RN, Vice President, Sullivan Healthcare Consulting

With an estimated 40 percent of total revenue generated by the operating room, decisions related to allocating OR capacity are critical to hospital profitability and surgical suite efficiency. Most operating rooms have significant variation in daily surgical volume, surgeon self interest, underutilization of block, and in consistent block management practices. Many organizations have tried unsuccessfully to smooth the schedule and plan for unexpected daily volume variations. Directors and managers are challenged daily with providing a quality-based and efficient operating room. This session will present the strategy and methodology to successfully “get the right fit” for any OR.


Multidisciplinary Collaboration in the Sterile Processing Department

Elbridge “Eb” Merritt, RN, MSN, CNOR, CHL, Brooke Army Medical Center

Multidisciplinary collaboration in the SPD will examine the definition of multidisciplinary collaboration, purpose and goals, documented success rates, as well as discuss current literature. We will examine various professionals to involve in the collaborative process as well as processes that can be improved by multidisciplinary collaboration. Lastly, we will identify and discuss various approaches for garnishing support for collaboration within these various areas.


What would Florence Do? Addressing a Culture of Ownership

Dawn Whiteside, MSN, RN, CNOR, RNFA, Nurse Manager, Credentialing and Education Development, Competency and Credentialing Institute

“The Florence Prescription,” written by Joe Tye and Dick Schwabb, discusses how Florence Nightingale would handle today’s health care crisis related to low staff morale and lack of accountability. What would Florence do to foster a culture of ownership? We will focus on the eight essential characteristics for ownership, personal success and happiness. You will this leave class with a prescription for growing ownership in your organization and improving behaviors with the Great Pickle Challenge.


The Death Spiral May Begin With You!

James X. Stobinski, PhD, RN, CNOR, CSSM, Acting CEO, Competency and Credentialing Institute

This session will examine the enculturation process, to include the current orientation methods, for perioperative nurses as they enter the profession. “The Novice to Expert Continuum” by Patricia Benner is used as a framework to view these processes. There is a focus on the interaction between the novice nurse and the experienced nurses already working in the unit. The Death Spiral concept will be explained in relationship to the career path of a perioperative nurse.


Cracking the Code on Improving Block Utilization

Andi Dewes, Vice President, Surgical Excellence at Syús Inc. and Gail Pietrzyk, Corporate Director Surgical Services, UHS

Your operating room’s most valuable asset is time. Hospitals usually set aside 70 to 80 percent of their OR time to surgeon and specialty blocks so the performance of your block schedule typically drives the performance of your OR. Surgeons are highly sensitive to how block time is distributed and emotions can run high when discussing utilization. To make it all work, you need everyone on the same page. In this session attendees will learn best practice recommendations to optimize block performance, tools and implementation strategies to get started, and hear how a large health system was able to improve block utilization through data transparency and shared governance.