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Theatre nurses back new efficiency programme

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A programme that encourages operating theatre staff to work as a multi-disciplinary team can save time and improve the working lives of staff, according to health experts and nurses.

The Productive Operating Theatre, developed by the NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement, involves staff taking a five-minute briefing at the beginning of each day, where staff can also check they have the correct equipment.

Initially trialled at the Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust, Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust and West Middlesex University Hospital NHS Trust, the programme is set to be rolled out nationally in September.

Amanda Fegan, lead associated for the productive operating theatre programme, told Nursing Time: ‘I have heard nurses saying that it saved 45 minutes in yesterday’s list because it identified that we did not have the right sutures.

Claire Bradbury, theatre matron at the Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust, said: ‘We have cut down on waste and we have made our list more efficient. We are more prepared – it takes five minutes but we will make that up during the day.

Ms Fegan added: ‘Staff leave home on time, they feel it is phenomenal.’

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