Letters

Effectiveness of trained nurses in preoperative assessment

BMJ 2003; 326 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.326.7389.600 (Published 15 March 2003) Cite this as: BMJ 2003;326:600

Unnecessary ritual should not be continued

  1. Ross K Kerridge, director, perioperative service ([email protected])
  1. John Hunter Hospital, Locked Bag 1, Newcastle Mail Centre, Newcastle, NSW 2310, Australia
  2. Whiston Hospital, Prescot, Liverpool L35 5DR

    EDITOR—As a trial, the study by Kinley et al shows that trained nurses are (approximately) equivalent to house officers at the tasks of conventional preoperative assessment.1 The real question to be asked is why we persist with the ritual of preoperative assessment led by junior staff (of whatever professional discipline) at all.

    A decade ago, I and my colleages re-engineered preoperative preparation of patients and developed a system that has eliminated the ritual involvement of junior medical staff …

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