Archive February 2017 XVIII, No. 2

Ideas That Work: A Positive Spin on Pre-op Time Outs

surgical team GROUP SHARE Close-knit surgical teams should recognize the good in their lives instead of constantly reintroducing themselves to each other.

A Positive Spin on Pre-op Time Outs

It's been proven that staff members who speak up during pre-op time outs are more likely to speak out if patient safety is jeopardized during the case. That's why surgical team members are often asked to introduce themselves to their colleagues in the room. Breaking the ice makes sense in large hospitals, but can feel a bit silly and pointless at smaller facilities where nurses, techs, surgeons and anesthesia providers have worked shoulder to shoulder for years. If your surgical team spends more time with each other than their own families, have them mention 3 positive things that happened to them that day instead or constantly reintroducing themselves to familiar faces during time outs. Recognizing life's positives still gets the group talking, and is an opportunity to build morale and improve the team's overall happiness.

Dwight Burney, MD
American Association of Orthopaedic Surgeons
dwightburney119@gmail.com

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