Archive April 2017 XVIII, No. 4

Behind Closed Doors: Does This Stuff Ever Happen to You?

Or am I the only lucky one to experience these OR oddities?

Paula Watkins, RN, CNOR

I have no illusions that everything is going to be perfect in the land of surgery. I'm not one of those who spew glitter everywhere and ride unicorns to work. Maybe it's me, but it sure seems like head-scratching moments like these find me at every turn.

Running out of supplies. How can we be out of sterile towels? Whose job is it to order the commonly used everyday supplies? And why do people take the last one of something and leave the empty box on the shelf? Tell someone. Write a note. Throw the box away. I'm going to that box with an almost giddy feeling, thinking finally for once I'm not going to have to listen to Dr. Kong go ape-poop crazy over being out of 3-0 Vicryl on an SH needle. My joy is short-lived. The box is empty. A pox on the swine for leaving the wretched empty box.

donut

Half-eaten donuts. Someone was nice enough to bring in a box of donuts this morning. But at 1900, you walk into the lounge and notice that someone else was considerate enough to cut the last donut in half and leave the other half in the box on the table. It's OK to take the last donut. No one, unless they are starving, is going to eat that dried-up old half you left behind. Eat the whole damn donut. You've already clogged your arteries with the first one you scarfed down. Finish that last donut off and throw the box away.

Incomplete consent forms. Don't you just love it when surgeons add additional stuff to the consent and you don't find out about it until you go to talk to the patient and confirm the consent? The old codger knows full well that stuff is not going to be pulled. It wasn't on the schedule. Dr. Massengill's going to be a hemorrhoid about it because he doesn't have what he needs for what he added on. Duh? He could have prevented it by using 1 of the 2 phones he carries to call us. We could have gotten some assistance to pull those things and we could still start on time. Maybe.

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