Perioperative Nurses Week

Perioperative Nurses Week
November 14-20, 2021

Safe Surgery Together: Advocacy

Our theme this year is Advocacy, inspired by AORN President Holly Ervine, MSN, RN, NPD-BC, CNOR, who believes members and perioperative nurses everywhere can be tremendously influential as advocates in multiple arenas including for themselves, the perioperative profession and, of course, surgical patients.  Since taking office in March, Ms. Ervine has dedicated her monthly President’s Message in AORN Journal to emphasize how, when, and where nurses’ voices can make a difference.

Together, let’s take the week to focus on advocating for your patients, the periop profession, education, giving back, and the culture of the perioperative setting.

Thank you to our proud sponsor: Styker

Celebrate Periop Nurses Week

Let's Eat Cake

Plan a gathering with cake or cupcakes. Just download the cake topper or the cupcake topper and send it to your favorite baker (or supermarket), tell them what size you’d like, and they’ll do the rest.


Post your Periop Proud pics on your social channels using #periopnursesweek2021 and @AORN on Facebook or @aornpics on Instagram.

Decorate Your Workplace

Download AORN's poster and journal ad. Print and post it wherever you want to raise awareness.


Share Your Celebration Experience

Whenever and however you choose to celebrate, share what inspires your perioperative practice during Perioperative Nurses Week, and you’ll be entered into a drawing to win:

  • the chance to win one of 5 free registrations to the AORN Global Surgical Conference & Expo 2022 with a New Orleans surprise experience*, or
  • a free, one-year AORN membership

You must be an AORN member to win. Winners will be contacted directly – please be sure your AORN member contact information is current.

*Daily AORN Expo 2022 Drawing Winners Will Also Receive One of These NOLA Experiences:

  • A complimentary registration and a private 1-Hour Carriage Tour for four through the French Quarter.
  • A complimentary Evening Jazz Cruise on the Steamboat Natchez with Dinner for Two.
  • A complimentary registration and four tickets to Mardi Gras World Behind-the-Scenes Tour with Shuttle Service.
  • A complimentary registration and New Orleans Food and History Walking Tour for four.
  • A complimentary registration and a French Quarter Photo Shoot for four.

How to Enter

  1. Take a photo or video (less than :30 seconds), capturing your Perioperative Nurses Week experience.
  2. Share it on your Instagram and Facebook account and tag us (@AORN on Facebook; @aornpics on Instagram).
  3. Add the hashtag #periopnursesweek2021.
  4. Share your post.

For an extra chance to win, complete this form.


Be an Advocate

Perioperative Nurses Week is a perfect time to share more information about the important work you do with elected officials and your community. You can be an advocate for perioperative nursing by sending an email to your legislators, submitting a letter to the editor of your local paper(s), or requesting a proclamation.

Here are some ideas:

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Make time today (and every day) to reset and rebalance. Here are some tools and resources that will help strengthen your emotional health and well-being.

  • A Nursing State of Mind – a series of 10 podcasts centered on emotional well-being in conversations between AORN Executive Director/CEO Linda Groah and Dr. Phyllis Quinlan, a self-care and healing coach who specializes in the emotional well-being of nurses.
  • Headspace is a free mindfulness app that focuses on positively altering the way we think, and the way we experience meditation.
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You’ve got this! As a perioperative nurse, patient advocacy is in your DNA. You are the eyes, ears, and voice for the vulnerable surgical patient and your advocacy on their behalf improves the quality of patient care and enriches the nursing profession.

Some of the more frequent needs for patient advocacy and intervention include:

Time Out

Stand up for your patient: Every team member should be engaged in the process. Distraction is a common cause of wrong side/wrong site surgery.


Speak up for your patient: If your patient is in one position for four hours, it’s time for a second Time Out. Speak up for your patient.

Unintentionally Retained Surgical Items

Hold your ground: If the count is off, it’s off, and it is your opportunity and responsibility to protect your patient.

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AORN is fighting every day to ensure perioperative nurses have the resources you need to care for patients, save lives and comfort families. With this aim, AORN is petitioning OSHA to establish a regulatory requirement for the use of surgical smoke evacuation systems designed to capture, filter, and remove surgical smoke before the plume makes respiratory and ocular contact with the occupants of operating rooms and procedural rooms nationwide. This petition will be delivered to OSHA in honor of Perioperative Nurses Week. Please help by signing.

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Nationwide, nurses, and all caregivers are running close to empty as the care of the Covid-19 patients drags on. In perioperative settings this fatigue can be seen in impatience, short tempers, and bickering which may lead to a breakdown in the quality of care. Be the force for good by taking a breath, giving a compliment or even taking a short break. Be the one to contribute to a healthy work environment by committing to kindness and civility.

Need help? Read:

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Creating lifelong learning opportunities for perioperative nurses is crucial to the future of the profession and the patients you care for every day. That’s why the mission of the AORN Foundation is to empower perioperative nurses in advancing patient and workplace safety through education and research. When you contribute to the Foundation, you are supporting scholarships and grants that directly impact thousands of nurses every year. Someday, that might be you!

Perioperative Nurses Week is the perfect occasion to donate $30 in celebration of the Foundation’s 30th anniversary and support nurses who make surgery safe.