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ADVANCE Perspective: Nurses

In the OR, It’s National Time Out Day

Published June 10, 2014 1:01 PM by Guest Blogger
By Linda Riccio, BSN, RN, operating room staff nurse at Saint Francis Hospital and Medical Center, Hartford, Conn.

June 11 is National Time Out Day. As a nurse professional I wanted to share how this important day relates to everyday practice in the environment of Saint Francis Hospital's surgical services.

Several years ago with the groundbreaking of a new, state-of-the art, operating room facility there was also an emergence of a culture that incorporated patient safety and satisfaction as its primary goal and focus. The leadership understood, and continues to understand, how important it is to provide the resources that their direct care providers need to foster a safe, high quality patient care environment.

The time out process is an essential part of that culture. Routine educational programs, led by Dawn Hydes, MSN, RN, CNOR, ENB, explain evidence based practice and emphasize compliance with AORN standards as they relate to the time out process. Everyday practice includes a dedicated moment by the entire team to stop and communicate all of the aspects of each patient's case in a standardized format utilizing a script that was collaboratively developed.

A most recent critical stat case, that had become an open thoracotomy prior to arrival to the OR, provides an example of the commitment and consistency of our time out practice as the team continued to perform a time out, despite the chaotic circumstance in which the patient was brought to the OR, ensuring that critical communication was clearly stated in order to safely continue with the procedure and stabilize the patient.

This year National Time Out Day will serve as a day of celebration for our team to honor our progress and commitment to patient safety. At Saint Francis Hospital and Medical Center the patient care providers of the perioperative services will join together for a commemorating breakfast provided by the Department of Surgery to recognize our achievements and continuation of reaching the highest level of safe patient care. Many compliments to our team for making the patient the center focus of our care!

For more information on National Time Out Day, go to

posted by Guest Blogger


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