Archive August 2014 XV, No. 8

Is Your Turnover Team Fast Enough?

Secrets to getting your ORs ready a few minutes sooner.

Dan O'Connor, Editor-in-Chief

turnover team NEED FOR SPEED No matter how fast your turnover times, part of you always wants to do a little better.

Are you satisfied with your turnover times? If you’re like most (82.2%) of the surgical facility leaders we surveyed last month, yes, you’re pretty pleased with how quickly your turnover team readies the room for the next case. We use the term team loosely, however, because only about 1 in 5 of our respondents actually has a dedicated turnover team. In most cases, the OR staff working the case does the cleaning, with an assist from floaters roaming the hallways or hanging (hiding?) out in the lounge. “It’s everyone’s job, from anesthesia to RNs to techs to nurse’s aides,” says Kathleen Tafoya, RN, the clinical nurse manager of the Saginaw (Mich.) Valley Endoscopy Center.

Today’s ORs aren’t sitting idle for very long between cases. Of the 84 facilities we surveyed, 25 reported sub-10-minute turnover times, 21 reported 10- to 15-minute turnovers and another 14 said they were ready for the next patient in 15 to 20 minutes. Not bad. But you’re not alone if you wouldn’t mind seeing your ORs turned over a minute or 2 faster. (Note: We define turnover as the time from patient-out to patient-in.)

“There is always room for improvement,” says Danielle DeWolfe, BSN, the clinical manager of the Surgery Center of Chevy Chase (Md.). “Yes, they could always be better,” adds Beth Herring, RN, MSN, CNOR, the OR educator at River Oaks Hospital in Jackson, Miss., who says managers shouldn’t be afraid to pitch in by mopping a room, making a bed or removing dirty bags. “Work waits for no one. Everyone’s hand fits a mop.”

Maureen Simpson, CNOR, the nurse manager of the OR and PACU at the Rye (N.Y.) Ambulatory Surgery Center, agrees that you should all lend a hand. “On busy patient days I try to put the administrative part of my job aside and stay in the OR to facilitate the turnovers,” she says.

New to Outpatient Surgery Magazine?
Sign-up to continue reading this article.
Register Now
Have an account? Please log in:
Email Address:
  Remember my login on this computer

advertiser banner

Other Articles That May Interest You

Can You Speed Up Your Reprocessing Department?

You can't cut corners or skip steps, but automation can help you get sets back to the OR sooner.

Video: Toyota Helps Overhaul California Hospital

'What on earth does making cars have to do with hospitals and health care?'

Flip This Room: The Value of Turnover Kits

Provide your staff with the supplies they need to clean and set up rooms.