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Letters & E-mails
Criticizing Our Covers
OSD Staff
Publish Date: April 3, 2008

Criticizing Our Covers
I'm really glad the "big one didn't get away," but I would rather not have seen the catch on that particular fishing expedition. Although I have been an active surgeon for 26 years, that February cover still makes me swallow hard each time.

James L. Pertsch, MD
Medical Director
ABJ Surgery Center
San Mateo, Calif.
[email protected]

The cover to the "2008 Manager's Guide to Overweight Patients" is offensive because it is disrespectful to the patient on the table. There is no need to show as much of the patient's body as you did to make the point that it's an obese patient. Just because you can take photos of these patients in these situations does not mean that you should.

Kelly Auvinen, RN
Endoscopy Nurse Manager
Gastroenterology Associates
Olympia, Wash.
[email protected]

Is Sterile Processing an Afterthought?
It amazes me that, during the start-up phase of a new, multi-specialty surgery center, I had to convince the medical director of the need for a sterile processing technician. He felt that it could be a task that everyone shared in. But my experience in the OR showed me how important this role is, not only in assuring sterility, proper biological testing and documentation, but also in being able to adapt quickly to the changing needs of the operating rooms.

I'm now involved in the start-up of another ASC and, once again, I'm hearing that they would like to combine the sterile processing job with the materials manager role. This might work for a one-room, one-specialty center, but it doesn't fly for a busy, multi-specialty center.

When are experienced sterile processing personnel going to be valued and respected for their important contributions? Most administrators have no clue until there is a problem, then suddenly they make the effort to educate themselves.

Jeannie Whelan, CST
Napa, Calif.
[email protected]

Laundering Scrubs at Home
Re: "Our Readers Come Clean on Home-laundered Scrubs" (March, page 36). AORN doesn't come out for or against home laundering; it just gives guidelines. I've spoken with IC nurses and the feeling is that home-laundering scrubs doesn't cause any further infection concerns than hospital-laundered scrubs. My staff launder their own and our surgeons have the option to do so. It helps having scrubs available for staff since this is an issue that never seems to go away.

Mitsy Pobiak, RN, CNOR
Operating Room Director
Texsan Heart Hospital
San Antonio, Texas
[email protected]

AORN doesn't recommend the practice, but has made allowances if you follow its stated guidelines. My question: Do the facilities that home-launder scrubs follow those guidelines through policy and procedure? And if so, how do they monitor what their staff does at home?

Pam Canfield, RN, MPA
Executive Director
The Eye Center of Columbus
Columbus, Ohio
[email protected]