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Answering the Call - May 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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in the rate of new COVID-19 cases in your community for at least 14 days, according to the roadmap. But even if your state's governor has deemed it safe to resume elective cases, expect a lag between when you decide to reopen and when your facility will be ready to start per- forming surgery. "It might take a full week to reset for surgery," says Julie Maiden, the director at Surgical Eye Center in Greensboro, N.C. First, she says, perform a deep terminal cleaning with EPA-approved cleaning solutions. Then, make sure every staff member is aware of the physi- cians' and anesthesiologists' guidelines for appropriate patient selec- tion. Ms. Maiden also recommends addressing the many logistical issues involved in reopening ORs after a significant hiatus, including ensuring every piece of equipment is in good working order, and checking expira- tion dates on medication vials and supplies. "Touch base with your vendors before reopening," says Ms. Maiden. "because there may be special circumstances regarding certain pieces of equipment due to the down time." For example, she cites the steril- izers her facilities uses and how they will have to perform three test cycles before the equipment is ready to go again. • How and when will we test? The only way to ensure the safety of patients and your staff is through rigorous COVID-19 screening and testing protocols, according to Vangie Dennis, RN, MSN, CNOR, CMLSO, executive director of perioperative services at WellStar Atlanta Medical Center & Atlanta Medical South. Her home state of Georgia has been a leader in reinstituting elective surgeries, her facili- ty's testing protocols are already established and go well beyond stan- dard temperature checks and questionnaire screenings. "We require system-level COVID-19 testing for any patient coming in for surgery," says Ms. Dennis. "Patients must complete testing within 96 3 8 • O U T PA T I E N T S U R G E R Y M A G A Z I N E • M A Y 2 0 2 0

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