Whether it is sports, chess, or writing an expert series month after month, practice is required to hone skills and master any craft. Manual cleaning of surgical instrumentation is no exception. It is one thing to implement a policy in your facility and it is another to make sure that people are practicing it every single day. Whether it be good intentions or a visit by The Joint Commission that sparked the new policy, training is critical to success. Consistency is key. Too often a great new policy is implemented, but after weeks or months, it disappears. Sterile Processing departments are full of challenges, and the “do as I say, not as I do” mentality has a significant negative impact on the daily performance of your team and the culture in your department. Policy implementation does not have to be a demand, it should be a cohesive, and collaborative process. Front line technicians, especially those that are in decontam using cleaning brushes every day, can be a great source of new ideas and creative solutions. Meshing ideas from front line techs with industry guidelines and standards have generated many best practices that are being used in Sterile Processing departments around the globe. Utilizing ideas from the team also creates trust and shows that leaders have a vested interest in both the performance of the department and their team as individuals. Sterile Processing professionals understand what it takes to prepare safe surgical instruments for every patient, every time. Trust them to help guide best practices in your department.
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