Wednesday, November 08, 2006

St. Joseph Hospital PACU Nurses Win Poster Presentation Award

Tracy Dickman, RN, BSN, Clinical Nurse II, Pavilion PACU, Darlene Soriano, BS, MHA, Surgery Support Specialist, Pavilion, OR, and Dana Rutledge, RN, PhD, Nursing Research Facilitator, won first prize among 14 other presentations for a nursing research poster at the recent Joint Southern California STTI Chapters Odyssey 2006 Conference.

This prestigious honor was bestowed along with a plaque at the Ontario conference October 26-27. The poster presentation described an action research project carried out in the Pavilion PACU.

During Fall 2005, Alicia Leal, BSN, RN, CPAN and other PACU staff initially designed the research study that examined patient flow within the Surgery Center. Tracy analyzed the statistical data collected and noticed a potential clinical problem. Tracy then met with Kathy Dureault, RN, MSN, Clinical Educator. Many patients were arriving unprepared to ambulatory surgery (e.g., did not have transportation home or a responsible adult to be with them upon discharge, etc.). Kathy connected Tracy with Dr. Rutledge, who discussed how to evaluate the nature and intensity of the problem using survey methodology.

PACU nurses implemented an action research project. They found that in over 600 patients admitted for surgery, 75% had received the Personal Recovery Plan Pamphlet (PRPP) developed by SJO nurses and disseminated through surgeon’s offices. In all patients who received it, the Plan was perceived as helpful. Of the patients, 78% received a preoperative call from SJO staff. Despite not all patients receiving the pamphlet or call, 99% of patients thought that their preparation for surgery was adequate.

During fall 2006, Darlene called surgeon’s offices, making sure staff understood how the PRP was to be used. She updated and converted them into electronic files available of the English, Vietnamese, and Spanish versions to enable staff to keep copies readily available in offices. The PRP is also now available on the SJO Intranet/website at under the Patients and Families link. You can also view the Personal Recovery Plan Pamphlet here. Between Thanksgiving and Christmas, Tracy and PACU nurses will be surveying patients again to determine proportions of patients who have been adequately prepared for their surgeries. They hope to see a change.

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