New Hanover Regional Medical Center maintains its commitment to quality and patient safety. We know that you are eager to get home. Less time in the hospital means you are on the road to recovery and able to get back to the things you most enjoy. Our goal is to have every patient feeling his/her best so he/she can return to his/her daily routine.
Each patient's safety is of the utmost importance to us at NHRMC. Although there are normal risks for every surgery, NHRMC takes great care to ensure that these risks are minimized using specific protocols and following precise guidelines to ensure safe care of every patient.
Universal Correct Site, Correct Procedure Protocols
NHRMC's Orthopedic Center has adopted and implemented proven initiatives aimed at ensuring safety and quality. The time-out process is a Joint Commission quality initiative that outlines steps to resolve questions and issues before beginning any procedure. At NHRMC, each and every patient is checked and double-checked thoroughly before surgery. In addition, before procedures physicians clearly mark or initial the site of surgery, all members of the team check and cross-check patients' armbands and every member of the team is expected to check again and verify all information if anything seems unclear.
The importance of reducing surgical site infections has prompted nationwide initiatives. NHRMC realizes this key component of quality and safety and has placed strict infection prevention protocols throughout the health system in every facet of patient care. Using prophylactic antibiotics - administered in the absence of infection as a preventative measure - within one hour prior to surgery and then discontinued within 24 hours following a procedure has become the accepted guideline. NHRMC's Orthopedic Center's protocols adhere strictly to these guidelines, but still allow your physician and other clinicians to use their judgment to meet your individual needs. Each patient's case is thoroughly reviewed and the appropriate plan of care is followed to reduce infection risk. We emphasize the importance of infection prevention steps along the entire process including use of special anti-bacterial soap prior to being admitted for surgery, moving patients to a traffic-controlled area prior to their procedure, wiping down the patient before surgery with an anti-bacterial surgical solution and the use of clean sheets and gowns during and after the procedure. NHRMC focuses on the entire body, not just the surgical site, to further decrease the risk of any infections. This includes inspecting and inquiring about any new wounds and taking a complete and thorough history about any increased risk factors.
Blot clot prevention
Lying still in bed following surgery can increase the risk for blood clots to form. These clots can block blood vessels or break loose, forming an embolism, and travel to the heart, lungs or brain. NHRMC wants to make sure that every patient has the best possible care to prevent blood clots. To this end, we have cautionary and preventative measures in place to guard against the formation of blood clots. Our guidelines outline steps to identify each at-risk patient and conduct individual assessments. Our prevention measures include administering blood-thinning medications, getting patients up and mobile as soon as possible following surgery, physical therapy and use of stockings and other devices.
Before a scheduled procedure, each patient undergoes thorough pre-testing to ensure he/she is medically and mentally prepared for surgery. Thorough testing, including cardiac clearance, labs and a complete history, is administered to make sure patients are prepared physically. Patients can be active partners in their care by giving accurate information to their healthcare team, including providing a complete list of prescriptions, and adjusting lifestyle factors identified as possibly affecting outcomes, such as maintaining a healthy weight and quitting smoking. And because NHRMC is also aware that some patients may be anxious about their surgeries, our pre-assessment allows for the education of patients and the opportunity to ask questions so they understand exactly what will happen the day of surgery, during the procedure and afterward. Remaining an active, informed and fully prepared patient will help ease your nervousness considerably and may help improve outcomes.