Case Study Scenarios
1. Decontamination Principles: Dr. Frankie is a prestigious neurosurgeon at Glory Medical Center. During the last week, the surgical technician in the operating room has noticed that dirty instruments have made it into the OR. The technician finally decides to consult with the supervisor because the incident has now occurred three days in a row. What issue has occurred, and what may be the cause of this/these errors? What might the sterile processing department have to do to resolve this issue? Explain the decontamination process. What extra efforts can be made to ensure that clean instruments are delivered to the surgical suite?
2. Sterilization Methods: Kristine, a technician in the sterile processing department, has noticed that after sterilization at least two out of every four loads sterilized for the day are moist. She has consulted with her supervisor on effective ways in which she could troubleshoot the concerns with wet loads, because it has now affected the department’s work efficiency and quality control. Why might the loads be wet? What solutions can Kristine apply to ensure that the processed instrument sets aren’t moist? Define a wet load. Discuss how this issue can affect both the operating room and the sterile processing department. How should Kristine handle the wet packages to ensure quality control?
3. Preparation of Medical Equipment and Supplies: Over the last month, the operating room has received rigid containers without filters, assembled instruments in sterilized sets, and closed versus open packaged and processed instruments. Why are all three of these occurrences an issue? Discuss the instrument preparation process. What can the sterile processing technician do to ensure that all items are prepared and packaged correctly? What might the operating room staff have to do if items are received closed, assembled, or without the appropriate filters, chemical indicators, etc.? How can it affect the patient if those items are used?
4. Inventory Control and Distribution: The sterile processing department at Hershey-Chocolate Medical Center has an excessive amount of inventory. Discuss what issues or concerns may occur due to this excessive inventory. What inventory system may work well for their department? Discuss at least four types of inventory systems and how each could initiate a more controlled environment of inventory for the facility. How can distribution be affected by excessive inventory?