Submitted by PeaceHealth

The Association of periOperative Registered Nurses has named PeaceHealth United General Medical Center as a Center of Excellence in Surgical Safety: Prevention of Retained Surgical Items (RSI).

The first-of-its-kind award recognizes PeaceHealth United General for its commitment to reducing the risk of surgical errors by advancing the education of its surgical team members in the prevention of near-misses and the consequences of unintentionally retained surgical items.

AORN rolled out its national education and recognition awards program in early 2022–and PeaceHealth United General was the first facility in the United States to earn the designation. The award signifies the medical center has adopted new practices in its continued safe care of the surgical patient after successfully completing the months-long comprehensive, evidence-based program.

“Our OR nurse manager, Shrene Clement, recognized how important it was for her team to be aligned and committed to becoming a center of excellence for surgical safety,” said Sharon Rutherford, director of clinical services at PeaceHealth United General. “She had total buy-in from her amazing team of caregivers, who were required to complete 100 percent of the training as a demonstration to their commitment. Thanks to their hard work, PeaceHealth United General is now a demonstrated national leader on this important patient safety initiative. I could not be prouder of our OR team.”

Renae Battié, AORN vice president nursing, visited PeaceHealth United General recently to present the award in person, along with representatives from Stryker Surgical Technologies, AORN’s corporate partner on the program initiative.

“It is with great pride and pleasure to honor the collaboration of this team in working together for excellence in evidence-based perioperative patient care,” Renae said. “To be the first award recipient should make the whole community very proud!”

Unintentionally retained surgical items, or RSIs, refer to any surgical sponge, instrument, tool or device that is unintentionally left in the patient at the completion of a surgery or other procedure. For years, unintentional RSIs have been identified as the most common serious patient harm event in surgical or invasive procedures by The Joint Commission, the standards-setting and accrediting body in health care.

“As surgical procedures continue to advance and medical research reveals new methods to improve surgical patient safety practices, it is imperative that facilities and practitioners change their practice in the interest of patient safety,” said AORN’s Executive Director/CEO Linda Groah, MSN, RN, CNOR, NEA-BC, FAAN. “This Center of Excellence for Surgical Safety designation shows the community that they can depend on the quality of care provided by PeaceHealth United General Medical Center and its surgical teams.”

AORN represents the interests of more than 200,000 perioperative nurses by providing evidence-based research, nursing education, standards, and practice resources to enable optimal outcomes for patients undergoing operative and other invasive procedures.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email