Are Your Anesthesia Providers an Infection Risk?

A separation in sterility: It would be unimaginable to use surgical instruments on a patient without sterilizing and processing the instruments to ensure sterility. But when you look at the tools an anesthesiologist use there is little to no certainty that they are sterile or clean. Another example, many anesthesiologist prepare for the next case during the current surgical case, drawing up medications, pulling airway equipment, setting up IV’s. This is something that would never happen with the ST or circulator you are not even able to start cleaning the room until the patient is out of the room let alone bring out supplies.

Contact and access: The supplies and cart that the anesthesiologist uses are not easy to clean with all the knobs, valves and drawers. Since the anesthesia provider works with IV’s, a direct link to a patients blood, it is possible for them to contaminate their supplies and transfer contaminates to the next patient if supplies and equipment are not adequately wiped/disinfected after each use.

Hand Hygiene Hurdles: The rapid sequence of events they manage make it almost impossible for the anesthesia provider to perform hand hygiene between every task. Provide them with a hand sanitizer on their cart.

Double gloving: Intubate and mask the patient remove one set of gloves and then administer medications.

Source: Outpatient Surgery Magazine