Access Now: AORN COVID-19 Clinical Support

Georgia Senate Study Committee on Surgical Smoke Holds First Meeting

Nurses present the research and science of the dangers of surgical smoke

Publish Date: September 23, 2020

On Tuesday, September 15, the Georgia Senate Study Committee on Surgical Smoke Evacuation Systems held the first of three meetings scheduled for this fall. Presenters included Brenda C. Ulmer, MN, RN, CNOR, AORN Past President; Pat Thornton, MSN, RN, CNOR, Georgia State Council Chair; Christopher Hudgins, BS, ASN, RN, CNOR; and Doreen Wagner, PhD, RN, CNOR.

The Senate Study Committee on Surgical Smoke Evacuation Systems was convened in response to Senator Gloria Butler’s 2020 surgical smoke evacuation legislation, SB 341. The bill did not pass during the 2020 legislative session, and Senator Butler advocated for a study committee to investigate the issue in greater detail after the legislature adjourned for the year.

During the two-hour committee meeting on September 15, Senators received a live demonstration of surgical smoke evacuation and heard the facts and data supporting evacuation of surgical smoke. A recording of the full meeting is available online.

The Study Committee will meet again on October 20 and November 17. During the October meeting, Senators will hear from health care providers and patients on how surgical smoke has impacted them personally. If you have a story to share with the members of the Study Committee, please contact Jennifer Pennock, AORN Senior Manager of Government Affairs.