Tyrone Hospital enhances service for outpatient surgical patients

Tyrone Hospital has enhanced its service for outpatient surgical patients by expanding its pre-registration program.
The program was developed by Nursing Administrators Al Godissart, RN and Linda Wertz, RNC. Godissart said Tina Murray, RNC is now serving as nurse liaison for outpatient surgical patients.
“The nurse liaison is available to meet with surgical patients one on one to prepare them for surgery,” said Godissart. “The addition of a nurse liaison allows us to provide even more personalized attention to our surgical patients.”
The pre-registration program for surgical patients involves working with patients and physicians to get as much paperwork, testing, and instruction done as possible before a patient arrives at the hospital for surgery. When a patient needs surgery, their physician gives them documents to complete. Registration forms, pre-anesthesia forms, consent forms, and patient medical history and physical forms are among those that can be completed in advance.
“We know our patients, especially outpatients, like to be in and out. By doing this, we are able to cut down on the amount of time patients spend at the hospital the day of their surgery,” said Murray.
Depending on a person’s unique medical status and the type of surgery they are having they may need to have lab work, a chest x-ray, an EKG or other testing. These may also be completed in advance.
“I schedule a time to interview the patient either in person or by phone, depending on patient preference. I review what will happen before, during, and after surgery and give them directions for any pre-surgical testing that may be needed,” said Murray. If any testing is needed before surgery, patients can do it in advance at a time that suits their schedule or on the day of the interview. Patients receive a separate call to notify them of the time of their surgery.
After surgery, nursing staff makes follow-up calls to patients at home to see how they are doing and answer any questions they may have to support their recovery process. If for any reason an outpatient surgical patient has to be admitted to the hospital, Murray makes a visit to them.
The nurse liaison for pre-registration is still in its early stages of implementation, but Murray said it is getting off to a good start.
“We have good support from our surgeons and hospital staff, especially registration, lab, and cardiopulmonary as they are directly involved in the process. We have also had positive feedback from patients. I think patients appreciate the personalized attention they receive.”
The hospital has also been upgrading and expanding its surgical patient education materials as part of the program. Murray said it is helpful for people to have written information to take home with them.
“If patients and those involved in their care at home are well informed and have materials to refer to, it helps them stay focused on the steps they need to follow to have a good recovery.”
For more information about the pre-registration program for outpatient surgical patients, contact Tina Murray, RNC at 684-6383.