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Archive January 2020 XXI, No. 1

5 Tips for Faster Turnover Times

Flipping ORs between cases demands tight teamwork and proper planning

Daniel Cook

Daniel Cook, Editor-in-Chief


ALL IN Engaging every member of the surgical team in addressing room turnover issues will result in scalable and sustainable solutions.

Regardless of size or specialty, every OR faces the same obstacles to efficient room turnovers — inflexible thinking, institutional dogma and long-held beliefs about how rooms should be reset between cases. Thankfully, there are several practical ways to give your staff the tools and support they need to wipe down surfaces, mop floors, position equipment and gather needed supplies faster than ever.

1. Trace the turnover team’s steps. Observe your turnover team in action to identify areas for improvement. How many people enter the room to clean and what role(s) does each play? How many times do they leave to grab missing supplies? How often are they called away to another assignment? What excess movements can you streamline? Begin this process with an open mind.

“When we started out, we didn’t know what we were looking for,” says Alicia Rock, BSN, RN, CNOR, interim assistant nurse manager at University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics in Iowa City. “But after watching, the issues became obvious. We were able to narrow them down to things that we’d be able to influence.”

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