Sharing Among Specialties

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Grand rounds highlight diversity of nursing

by Jennifer Walker

Because Single Incision Laparoscopic Surgery [SILS] is one of the newest approaches coming out, you can imagine where surgery is going to go in the next couple of years,” says Gia Galvez, RN, the Specialty Service Coordinator for Bariatrics and General Surgery at Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center.

Galvez recently explained the SILS technique to a group of 50 nurses from various specialties at the hospital’s Nursing Ground Rounds. The attendees may never use this technique as part of their jobs, but that’s the purpose of these quarterly presentations—to highlight each department’s activities and, in the process, the diversity of nursing.

“You have nurses from neurology, medicine, other surgical nurses, labor and delivery, psychiatry, and ICUs [who attend],” says Cindi Wood, MSN, APRN/PMH, Chair of the Nursing Grand Rounds Planning Committee. “You’re learning about what’s going on in these other specialties.”

Staff members from each department have the opportunity to present on a topic of their choosing. So when it was the Operating Room’s turn, Galvez talked about SILS, a minimally-invasive surgical technique, because it’s a new advancement for the department, which began using it in late 2009.

With SILS, surgeons can remove the gallbladder, perform hysterectomies, repair hernias, and more by making a single incision only in the belly button, as opposed to the six-inch incision that is often required in traditional surgery and the three or four smaller incisions required to perform laparoscopic surgery.

“[Patient benefits are] minimal hospital stay, less pain, and a single incision that is hidden so it is essentially scarless,” says Galvez.

“Patients love it because you’re in and out, and you don’t have traditional sutures,” says Wood. “Recovery isn’t nearly as difficult.” (Still, Galvez says nurses should care for SILS patients in exactly the same way they care for laparoscopic surgery patients.)

As the Clinical Nurse Specialist, Psychiatry and Addictions, at Bayview, Wood is a perfect example of a nurse who doesn’t use the SILS technique in her everyday work. However, that doesn’t mean she won’t encounter it someday, which is what makes Nursing Grand Rounds relevant for all nurses.

“If I needed to have my gallbladder out, I don’t really know what they do in these surgeries,” says Wood. “It gave me insight into that.”

At the next Nursing Grand Rounds presentation in September, the Hopkins Bayview Nursing Intradisciplinary Wound Care Team will talk about Evidence-Based Practice in Skin Care.

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