The proposed recommended practice for care and handling of specimens in the perioperative environment was developed by the AORN Recommended Practices Committee and is being presented for review and comment at this time. The AORN Recommended Practices Committee is interested in receiving comments on this proposal from members and others.
The recommended practices are intended as achievable recommendations representing what is believed to be an optimal level of practice. Policies and procedures will reflect variations in practice settings and/or clinical situations that determine the degree to which the recommended practices can be implemented.
These recommended practices provide guidance for the implementation of containment, identification, labeling, preservation, transfer, transport and disposition of surgical specimens. Specimens in this document include tissue, blood, body fluids or foreign bodies (e.g. plates, screws) removed from a patient for pathological, microbiological, or gross examination. Specimen identification, collection and handling is a multidisciplinary task that requires vigilant attention to details so that each person in the chain of custody understands the patients needs, and information about the specimen. Mishandling or misidentification of specimens can lead to inaccurate or incomplete diagnosis or the need for additional procedures. The expected outcomes of primary import to these recommended practices are that the patients care is consistent with the perioperative plan of care, and that the patients value system, lifestyle, ethnicity, and culture are considered, respected, and incorporated in the perioperative plan of care as appropriate.
To view the proposed recommended practice, go to www.aorn.org