Concerning NFPA 99, 2012 edition 15.12 - Facility is being cited by Joint Commission because they are in violation of code 188.8.131.52. The describe a alcohol type swab (prep sponges or applicators) that are used within the OR's. The removal of these devices prior to draping the patient takes a surgical member out of the room during an important phase of the procedure, causing a distraction in patient care. It is also not in alignment with AORN Guidelines for Prevention of Retained Surgical items as they need to complete a full account/reconciliation of all products used during the procedure. The facility also mentioned that opening an OR door could disrupt the airflow in the OR and increase the risk for surgical infection for the patient. My question is this...if this device was contained within a metal or plastic type container (I.e. sharps container) within the OR and away from ignition sources (I.e. electrical outlets and electrical instruments) would the facility be in compliance? Or, what other engineering measures could they employ to meet both NFPA 99 and AORN requirements?
Sean K. Condon
Deputy State Fire Marshal
Oregon Office of the State Fire Marshal