Designated Pit Crew Speeds Room Readines
Turnover time makes or breaks an efficient schedule. After a case, my physician colleagues and I know we're ready to move onto our next case within a 10-minute window, but what we don't know is how long it's going to take for the room to be turned over. And while double-booking ORs to swing between is a highly efficient solution, it can be impractical to tie up an empty room while we're working an hour-plus case.
In order to get more consistent turnover results, we designate a bare-bones "pit crew" of available staffers to handle the task, instead of multi-tasking OR staffers. Once the incision is closed and the dressing is on, the surgical team escorts the patient out of the OR to recovery and the scrub tech takes the instruments to central sterile. While they're taking care of that, the pit crew moves in to clean the room, park the necessary equipment outside the door and help to open the next case. If your pit crew is made up of OR-experienced staff, they could even stand ready to work the next case.