Ann Fahey-Widman, APR
Vice President, Corporate Communications
From surgical infections and wrong-site surgeries to needle sticks and pressure ulcers, the list of what can go wrong during a surgical experience is long, intimidating, and costly. Recent studies show that the cost to treat a single surgical site infection is more than $28,000.
To address these alarming issues, Medline today launched EMPOWER — an innovative new program designed to empower OR staffs by increasing the awareness of safety and quality issues through several unique training and education programs; opening lines of communications within OR teams; and helping them streamline their operations through lean assessments and other efficiency tools. Medline introduced the EMPOWER program at the 59th Annual Association of periOperative Registered Nurses (AORN) Congress, the world’s largest gathering of OR nurses now in session in New Orleans, LA.
“While tremendous strides are being made, OR safety continues to be one of the issues that keeps hospital executives awake at night,” said Edwin Loftin, RN, MBA, FACHE, vice president of nursing at Parrish Medical Center in Titusville, Fla. “With Medline’s new EMPOWER program, we now have access to valuable resources that will help our OR teams build a culture of safety within the OR.”
Phase I of Medline's new EMPOWER educational series focuses on the most critical and fundamental safety issues facing ORs today, from preventing wrong-site surgery, retained objects and sharps injuries to maintaining normothermia and preventing pressure ulcers.
The capstone course for this initial series addresses the need to create a culture of safety — empowering OR teams to speak up and speak out. Medline's new free CE course, "Speak Your Truth," addresses this critical need by helping build a foundation of communications and trust that fosters a culture of safety. This unique staff empowerment training was just awarded the Association of Perioperative Registered Nurses' (AORN) (Denver, CO) Seal of Recognition, a designation that confirms the content of training and in-service programs and materials has undergone thorough review by AORN and “addresses team skills and communication practices, which will result in safer patient care and reduced numbers of errors,” according to AORN.
“Every day, Medline account managers work with more than 1,500 OR teams throughout the country and the world to help them improve the quality, efficiency and effectiveness of their OR operations. We asked them for their greatest pain points and their response was loud and clear: safety, efficiency and cost. They told us that building a culture of safety is critical and that they need help in empowering their teams to speak up and speak out,” said Kimberly Haines, RN, certified OR nurse, vice president of clinical resources, Medline.
“Through our new EMPOWER program, Medline is providing OR teams with clinically proven solutions and resources to help them solve their most challenging issues. Through this series, we are helping them enhance their culture of safety, reduce the risk of patient harm and elevate the patient experience at their facility,” continued Haines.
To register for one of the free EMPOWER CE programs or more information on Medline’s new EMPOWER educational series, go to www.medlineuniversity.com.
About Medline’s OR Products and Programs
Medline started as an OR solutions provider more than 100 years ago when the company’s founder got his start in health care by making surgeon gowns and was the innovator responsible for changing OR gowns from white to blue to reduce the dangerous glare from OR lights. Since then, Medline has built an entire suite of OR solutions that focus on solving the critical problems that cost hospitals more money. Today, Medline’s OR products include PerfecTemp for warming patients in the OR; OR gowns, masks and gloves, including the company’s new Signature Glide glove; Medline’s pressure ulcer prevention products and program; ClearCount RFID counting and detection used to eliminate retained foreign objects; special flags, drapes and labels to help prevent wrong-site surgeries; a number of products designed to prevent needle stick and blade injuries to both patients and staff; as well as ERASE CAUTI, innovative products and programs designed to reduce the risk of catheter-associated urinary tract infections, a common, yet avoidable surgical complication.
As the nation's largest privately held manufacturer and distributor of health care and surgical products, Medline manufactures and distributes more than 350,000 products to hospitals, extended care facilities, surgery centers, physician offices, home care providers and agencies, and retailers. Recently named one of the nation’s "Best and Brightest Companies to Work for,” Medline is headquartered in Mundelein, Ill. and has more than 1,100 dedicated sales representatives nationwide to support its broad product line and cost management services.
Over the past five years, Medline has been the fastest-growing distributor of medical and surgical supplies in the U.S., serving as the primary distributor to over 450 major hospitals and healthcare systems. As a leading distributor, Medline offers a comprehensive array of consulting and management services encompassing the supply chain and logistics, utilization and standardization, business tools and enhanced reporting capabilities and on-staff clinicians.
Medline has a growing network of 50 manufacturing and distribution centers worldwide, as well as an expanding, dedicated transportation fleet with over 200 vehicles in a variety of sizes to fit customers' specific delivery needs. The fleet is equipped with the latest navigation devices for enhanced order tracking and communication.