Operating Room Nurses role: analysis of private and public hospitals in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil


operating room

PlumX Metrics


The Operating Room (OR) nurse many times is the unique working in Surgical Theatre. They have so many duties and solicitation that they are stressed in the end of each shift. Since 19901, the Perioperative Nursing System (SAEP) has been developed and encouraged its implementation. OBJECTIVES: identify the activities realized by OR nurses and compared their work in public and private hospitals. METHOD: An invitation was sent to each hospital with more than 50 beds, located in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. A sample of 14 hospitals accepted and 7 were public and 7 private hospitals. The data was collected using a structured questionnaire composed by open questions about: characteristics of hospital; description of surgical theatre; activities of nursing staff. To collect data about OR nurse activities, they are described as: preparation for anesthesia and surgery (14 items); during intraoperative period (24 items); at the end of surgery (14 items); management (9 items) and education, research and social role (8 items). The OR nurses, leader of nursing staff in surgical theatre, were interviewed at hospital, from September 2004 to May 2005. The anonymity and secret were observed. The statistical analysis was descriptive and used non parametric test x2. The Cronbach’s Alpha coefficient was 0.86. RESULTS: All phase of surgery that means, immediate preoperative, intraoperative and postoperative phases the presence of OR nurse is detected. The activities involved on preparation of the environment were most frequent. Data showed relations statistically significant, for OR nurses in private hospitals for activities related to preparation of surgery and intraoperative period due anesthesiologists and surgeons (p=0.01). The relations statistically significant for OR in public hospitals were: activities related to materials and equipments in preparation for surgery (p = 0.014) and intraoperative period due to anesthesiologists and surgeons (p=0.004). These results showed the difference between private and public hospitals. The activities in order to obtain materials and equipment were presented more in public hospitals, where the lack of maintenance and high technology were observed. CONCLUSIONS: OR nurses work as facilitator of surgical team work included conditions to performance the anesthesia and surgery. This is an important part of OR nurses’ role but they would like to have the possibility in developing more activities in order to implement SAEP. REFERENCE Castellanos BEP, Jouclas VMG. Assistência de enfermagem perioperatória: um modelo conceitual. Revista da Escola de Enfermagem da USP 1990; 24(3): 359-70.