New Kid on the Block – Begin Using Your Instrument Tracking System More Efficiently by Reinforcing the Basics
So you’re new to CensiTrac and you may be wondering what comes next with your instrument tracking system. Or perhaps you have been using CensiTrac for a while and are looking to check in with how things are going currently. Whatever scenario you find yourself in, developing or maintaining an effective CensiTrac system can be traced back to systematically using CensiTrac for the core processes of the sterile processing department. Establishing a solid foundation allows for growth into different and sometimes more advanced areas of CensiTrac.
A Strong Foundation
What then are the foundational pillars of CensiTrac? Decontamination, container assembly, sterilization, and post sterilization. It is in these areas that having effective practices will give you a solid foundation. Establishing the way of using CensiTrac in each one of these areas and defining the scan points as well as ensuring staff has the necessary knowledge and skill to complete each of these steps is important to maintaining an organized body with a shared purpose. What would being competent mean in each one of these areas? Using decontamination as an example, what scan points should occur in decontam? Not every department is the same, but generally, the steps documented would be checking case carts and sets into the decontamination module, documenting daily wash device test loads, and creating and resulting instrument washer loads. In this example, these would be the three identified decontam scan points that would be completed. After that, we would move on to container assembly, sterilization, and post sterilization and do the same by defining exactly what procedures should occur in each of these areas. Once this foundation of core processes is mastered, adding on additional modules and more advanced functions of CensiTrac can be achieved without great effort.
Start Small with Additional Features
When adding on additional features, be alert to set achievable goals, even if starting small. This might be integrating different areas of CensiTrac into the workflow such as beginning to use the maintenance module to track set usages or adding a report to reduce manual calculations/reminders. Ensure new processes are communicated, trained, understood, and complied with to maximize function and consistency. By branching out from the well-established core processes, you can begin to optimize your CensiTrac product in areas that provide you value. Consider checking out the CensiTrac ServicePlus option with your Censis client manager if you’re unsure where to start.
Another factor to consider when analyzing your CensiTrac workflow procedures is the role of the controllers of data (also known as “SuperUsers” or anyone who possesses elevated accesses). The duty of the SuperUser cannot be neglected. Persons with elevated accesses are able to create new data and edit existing data within CensiTrac. To maintain a clean and organized CensiTrac database with a standardized naming convention, you’ll want to ensure the SuperUsers understand their elevated accesses and are manipulating data appropriately within CensiTrac. This is a continual task. Clean data is beneficial for avoiding data inconsistencies that can lead to time delays, inefficiencies, and workflow errors. Since the SuperUsers are the gatekeepers and maintainers of data, they can be pivotal to success. Often but not always, the SuperUser also acts as an experienced and trusted source of facts, information, and skills acquired through experience with CensiTrac.
Maintain Core Processes
Remember, you’ll want to check in on your core processes and perform quality checks from time-to-time. We want to not only institute the core processes but maintain them as well. Part of that may be carrying out scheduled quality checks and following up with the end-user on discrepancies to rectify mistakes, as following up helps to prevent future errors. This cyclical pattern helps to identify and address errors, which then decreases errors and increases efficiency.
So then, what is the call to action? We want to instill a strong foundation through core processes with efficiency and consistency across the board in order to allow for additional optimization and integration of advanced modules and features. Identify the scan points that provide value and remove those that do not. Begin at the basics. The consistent integration of small goals adds up to a structured, efficient, and valuable customized process. A well-defined streamlined process.
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