Archive June 2011 XII, No. 6

Avoid These 7 Mistakes in Processing Ophthalmic Instruments

We must have zero tolerance for shortcuts in the decontamination, preparation and sterile processing of eye surgery's delicate tools.

Barbara Harmer, RN, BSN, MHA

The pressure to turn ophthalmic instruments over quickly cost a nurse manager her job. This accomplished nurse, with more than 20 years of experience in the OR, was caught literally stopping the sterilization process mid-cycle because she needed to get the instruments to an ophthalmologist who was throwing a fit over the delay. Ultimately, she put her own career and the patient's safety in jeopardy to placate an impatient physician.

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