There is a certain rhythm or vibe in the operating rooms. Sure it has something to do with the Eagles, Doors and Jack Johnson tunes coming from the I-pod but there is something more!! The nurses, students, technicians, anesthesiologists and surgeons glide swiftly in and out the swinging doors bringing in and taking out patients, instruments or equipment. All very purposefully in their mission. It doesn’t matter if you are a student or surgeon everyone is there for the sole purpose of improving the lives of the these children.
The surgeries can take a little less than 1 hour for a cleft lip repair to 2 or more hours for a cleft palate repair. This year there are 2 operating rooms and 3 operating tables. At each table there is a surgeon, anesthesiologist and a scrub nurse. There are circulating nurses on hand, who have not scrubbed in like the doctor and scrub nurse, to get whatever is needed in or outside the OR. In addition, they are supported by scheduling and sterile processing nurses. Many of these volunteers have never worked together but that is not apparent as there is great camaraderie , professionalism and respect amongst all.
The doctors plan on finishing 13 cases today and more than 50 by the end of the week!