Feb 23, 2022 | Sterile Processing Operating Room Best Practice Communication

Walk a Mile in Their Shoes: How Shared SPD and OR Perspectives Can Drive Innovative Solutions for Better Collaboration, Quality & Throughput

According to a January 2022 publication from the CDC’s National Healthcare Safety Network, Surgical Site Infection (SSI) remains a significant cause of morbidity, extended hospitalization, and mortality. In fact, SSI continues to drive approximately 20% of all Hospital Acquired Infections (HAIs) and is associated with an up to an 11-fold increase in the risk of death. SSI is also the costliest HAI, driving an estimated $3.3 billion in annual cost to the United States healthcare system through extended hospital length of stay by an average of 9.7 days and increased hospitalization costs by over $20,000 per admission.

Under such intense pressure to improve quality and safety while maintaining high surgical throughput volumes, it is easy to understand why the relationship between the SPD and OR – although inherently symbiotic – is so often strained and fraught with tension. The ability to solve this complex challenge and gain valuable insight to facilitate collaboration, improve surgical quality and safety, and optimize perioperative efficiency may begin simply through the willingness to walk a mile in each other’s shoes. Take a moment to consider the unique perspective of each department in the following real-world scenarios.

A Bad Day – The SPD Perspective

It’s Tuesday, and the loaner trays are due in from the vendor this afternoon. You’re already understaffed, but now two technicians call in sick, and then the number three washer goes down. You’re already behind schedule, and the carts are stacking up in the decontamination area. Your entire staff is burned out, and your remaining staff on site is working overtime and at increasing risk of making mistakes that undermine all the careful processes and efficiencies you’ve put in place. How will you possibly meet all your commitments to the OR today?

A Bad Day – The OR Perspective

It’s Tuesday, and you’re calling the SPD because some of the trays you requested aren’t ready. Of the trays you have received, you find that several are missing instruments. Your surgical nurses are complaining about holes in the blue wrap, missing indicators, and have even identified a suspected bio-burden on one of the complete trays. You already had a tight surgery docket today, and now unplanned critical patients are pouring in from the ER. Your OR nurses are scrambling to pull instruments from backup inventory and trays from other case carts and then finally resorting to IUSS. There has to be a better way.

Creating a Partnered Solution

Sterile Processing and OR departments need an experienced, collaborative partner who is committed to working shoulder-to-shoulder with them to understand their individual challenges and deliver solutions that not only meet their current needs but also help them to anticipate future ones. Censis is dedicated to listening carefully to all stakeholders in the process to identify critical issues that can meaningfully improve Sterile Processing and OR department communication, insight, and efficiency.

Make Your Voice Heard: Complete This 5 Question Survey to Help Improve SPD/OR Relations

Whether your facility is a Hospital, Ambulatory Surgery Center, Endoscopy Center or Clinic, improving perioperative efficiency is Censis’ sole focus. As the founder of instrument-level tracking and surgical asset management technology, our longstanding reputation is not only that of an innovator, but also a vested partner committed to listening, analyzing, and helping to solve some of the greatest challenges our clients face every day. Censis’ already helps more than 1,300 facilities across America improve surgical safety, quality and outcomes while positively contributing to their organization’s bottom line. Our industry-leading solutions to optimize SPD/OR interaction and efficiency currently include CensiTrac, LoanerLink, CensiMark, ScopeTrac Advanced and more. Censis ensures our clients stay ahead of the future by anticipating their evolving needs.