As an organisation, we are responsible for advising on and equipping a wide variety of clinical environments in low resource settings. This often includes operating room departments.
Our experiences managing these projects, both in terms of advising and procuring equipment, as well as the commissioning and training processes has led us to write a check list to guide those in the operating room environment. Our aim is enable them to run a safe and effective department and help to ensure good practise when we have left. Given there is very rarely any training for operating room staff we saw a vital need for such a list. Furthermore, we wanted to create a mindset of preparation.
We have reflected the realities of low resource environments in the list, especially the recovery room which is often given very little consideration.
In terms of patient monitoring it is our view that blood pressure monitoring is essential as well as pulse oximetry and this is reflected in the list. These, alongside all other items of equipment are available from us. We are having a monitor purpose built that fits our criteria. It will be supplied with two adult, paediatric and neonatal pulse oximetry probes and a wide range of child and adult blood pressure cuffs. There will be an optional CO2 capability and it can be supplied with or without a stand or storage trolley. If you wish to see what we put in our emergency bags see our further information section below.
The list is not a clinical check list. Therefore, beyond the absolute basics of patient identification and identification of the operation site, questions are not asked around allergies, antibiotics protocol and so forth. These are clinical questions of which we feel the answers should be ascertained and instigated by the clinical staff. We felt it important that the list is not too long or cluttered so have ensured to steer away from these.
The list can be used as an aid memoire for teaching operating room personnel, we will be writing teaching notes to accompany it. French and Spanish versions will soon be available.
I am pleased to report that the equipment arrived safely in Mwanza… I can confirm that all the large items were present …All the instrument sets were in order… The quality of the surgical instruments is superb. As promised, you included an enormous number of extras, the largest of which was a multifunction patient monitor. There are two ambulance emergency kits, a large range of anaesthetic equipment and vast supplies of surgical disposables. There are surgical scrubs and white gowns as well. Thank you for your efficiency and generosity. The people of rural Tanzania will most definitely benefit.
One of the easy we can make budgets go a long way is the sensible use of equipment no longer required in the west. This recycling is very effective. Please do contact us for further details if you think you have equipment of any sort that may help.