Background In 2012, the surgical unit of E. O. Galliera was reorganised with the inauguration of four new operating rooms, two sterilisation areas and a recovery room.
Purpose In this context, the S. C. Pharmacy undertook a collaborative project with the BOC to:
organise a warehouse next to the operating rooms
plan supplies and stocks
track the costs
oversee the correct use of Medical Devices (MD) and the kits needed for procedures
Materials and methods Originally, the MD used in the operating rooms were stored in a warehouse out of the BOC, detached from the main warehouse.
The unification of the equipment in one single area placed within the surgical unit allowed a more streamlined method of management. Moreover, in order to further improve the supplying, the monitoring and the appropriateness of use, open surgeries and video laparoscopy interventions have been standardised, and consequently procedural kits have been assembled.
Pharmacists daily prepare the kits needed for the interventions of the following day, working from the operating list they receive every week and which is confirmed every day. They also do the paperwork accompanying the kit. This records the devices included in the kit, their batch numbers, the expiry date and assigns them to the correct cost centre.
In order to guarantee the traceability, the serial number of every kit is recorded by the scrub nurse in the patient’s medical record. The scrub nurse is the nurse who assists the surgeon during the operation and who is responsible for providing the surgeon with the equipment and also prepares the patient for surgery.
Results Since October 2012, bariatric, cholecystectomy, splenectomy, left and right hemicolectomy, pancreaticoduodenectomy, total gastrectomy and partial appendectomy surgeries have been standardised.
To date, about 200 procedural kits have been assembled.
The standardisation of interventions makes possible the more appropriate use of equipment, which saves money. For example 280,000 € was saved in General Surgery in 2012, compared with 2011 (when a pharmacist was not present in BOC), without any decrease in operating activity.
Conclusions Pharmacists have been fundamental in the success of the project as they managed to establish an effective collaboration between coordinators, doctors and scrub nurses forming a multidisciplinary team. This enabled the optimisation of personnel, supplies and time needed for interventions.
Furthermore, departmental pharmacists in the operating rooms have provided their professionalism in a field that, until a short time ago, was the prerogative of only a few professions, thus demonstrating their versatility.
No conflict of interest.
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