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Standard Operating Procedure for Comfort and Cost Savings at Kaleida Health

Wed, 10/11/2006 - 8:04am

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“Nothing comes close to this product,” said Patricia Wopperer RN, MS, CNOR, RNFA, Kaleida Health’s director of value analysis, describing the time savings, the reduced cost and enhanced patient experience the MEGADYNE® MEGA 2000® Soft Patient Return Electrode delivers to Kaleida Health.

Like most hospitals and surgical centers, Kaleida Health works to maintain balance between providing an optimal surgical experience for the patient while at the same time keeping costs in check. Improving patient comfort and cost savings was the impetus behind the organization’s switch from using disposable sticky pads to the newer technology of the MEGA 2000 reusable patient return electrodes.

After seeing the MEGA 2000 at an AORN conference, Kaleida Health placed the pads in two of its critical care hospitals to see how they would perform for patient comfort and cost savings. Results of the study at the two hospitals, and a three-year projective cost comparison between small, disposable sticky electrodes and the MEGA 2000 pad proved that the MEGA 2000 demonstrated a tremendous cost savings over the cost of “sticky” electrodes and their disposal.

Kaleida Health’s cost saving results with the MEGA 2000 are not atypical. It is estimated that hospitals switching from small sticky disposable pads can save up to 50 percent on their use as well as their disposal costs. By switching to the reusable MEGA 2000 Soft, hospitals have saved more than 1.8 million pounds of medical waste and nearly $1 million in disposal costs alone, based on a $.50 per pound disposal fee.

Not only was the cost savings significant, but the patient comfort during electrosurgery was also enhanced. “We were very pleased with the original MEGA 2000 technology for the comfort it consistently delivered to our patients. So when MEGADYNE introduced the MEGA 2000 Soft, which incorporates the pressure reduction pad, we saw it as a great opportunity to reinforce our commitment to patient comfort and immediately transitioned to the new product,” said Wopperer. “We have now been using the MEGA 2000 Soft for two years.”


Enhancing Patient Comfort

Designed with enhanced patient comfort and safety in mind, the MEGA 2000 Soft is engineered with a pressure reduction pad that reduces pressure, shear and friction during lengthy surgical procedures to help prevent the development of pressure sores. Measuring a full 920 inches the pad maintains contact with the full length and width of an adult torso, ensuring full and safe electrical contact from the beginning to the end of the surgical procedure.

“Our surgical teams consistently report that skin redness or “pressure points” that often occurred in surgeries prior to using the MEGA 2000 Soft have virtually disappeared. We don’t see the number of incident reports we did in the past using the sticky pads,” said Wopperer. “In addition, the surgical teams have commented that patients are saying that the MEGA 2000 Soft makes them very comfortable. A more comfortable operating table combined with the reduction of pressure points can help patients to recover faster following their procedures.”


Avoiding Surgical Delays

Compared to sticky pads, the MEGA 2000 Soft has proved to be more convenient and easy to use for Kaleida Health’s surgical staff. Without the MEGA 2000 Soft, a surgery could be delayed while the team stops the procedure and a nurse works under and around the surgical table to identify a site to apply a disposable sticky pad and re-drapes the surgical area. Delays with sticky pads are not the only concern Wopperer cited, “application of a sticky pad during a procedure could compromise the sterile field.”

As a practice, patients are placed on the MEGA 2000 Soft during surgical prep prior to each surgical procedure--even though electrosurgery may not be used. That way, if during the procedure electrosurgery is needed, “you’re good to go,” said Wopperer.

Today, MEGADYNE’s MEGA 2000 Soft reusable return electrodes have become standard operating room equipment at Kaleida Health’s five acute care hospitals. “The network-wide standardization is providing cost savings for the hospital and, in return, enhancing comfort for our patients,” concludes Wopperer.

For more information on the MEGA 2000 Soft, visit megadyne.com or call 800-747-6110. For more information on Kaleida Health in Buffalo, NY, visit kaleidahealth.org.


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