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Retained Surgical Items

Initial, intraoperative, and final counts of all items used on the surgical field are performed to lessen the risk of patient injury from a retained surgical item (RSI). Because of the potential for count inaccuracies, perioperative team members should understand risk reduction strategies unique to each setting and implement appropriate processes. A reliable system to account for all surgical items includes complete, standardized, and accurate counting, both manually and with adjunct technology.

This course provides guidance to perioperative registered nurses (RNs) in preventing RSIs. This includes best count practices for soft goods, sharps, instruments, and miscellaneous items, prevention of retained device fragments, reconciliation measures, adjunct technology, documentation, policy, and quality and performance improvement.

Gap Analysis/Purpose

After completing this course, the perioperative RN will understand reliable practices to be implemented by all perioperative team members to reduce the occurrences of retained surgical items.


  • Identify reliable practices implemented by all perioperative team members to reduce the occurrence of RSIs.
  • Identify reconciliation methods to reduce count discrepancies throughout the surgical procedure.

Course Requirements

To receive 2.0 contact hours for this module, you must achieve mastery of the content and submit an evaluation as instructed at the end of the course. This module contains 102 questions.

2.0 Contact Hours

Expires 6/30/20

Accreditation, Disclaimer and Copyright


This program is approved for 2.0 hours of AEU credit by BASC provider #0102.

Computer Specifications

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