National Time Out Day
Today is National Time Out Day, an awareness campaign started by the Association of periOperative Registered Nurses (AORN) to support safe practices in the operating room. The awareness program, initiated in 2004, is supported by professional associations, The World Health Organization and The Joint Commission.
This year, AORN’s theme is SuperHero:
Support a safety culture
Use The Joint Commission’s Universal Protocol and AORN Surgical Checklist
Proactively reduce risk in the OR
Effect change in your organization
Reduce harm to patients
Have frank discussions about hazardous situations
Empower others to speak up when a patient is at-risk
Respect others on the surgical team
Openly seek opportunities for improving patient safety
Communicating the importance of the surgical time out to the organization is a vital part of supporting a culture of safety. The time out is a short pause immediately before incision where the entire operating team verifies:
- Patient identify
- Procedure being performed
- Operative site
- Other pertinent information
The surgical time out is a key strategy in preventing wrong-site, wrong-side, wrong-procedure or wrong-person surgery.
Included with today’s notice is an example policy relevant to the time out process.
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