I am still in nursing school
and was hoping for some tips/tricks when you go into an isolation room.
I know the correct order for donning/removal of PPE and that isn't really my issue. My issue is when it comes to my stethoscope, notepad/pen, and also the computer.
I know that a lot of rooms have their own stethoscopes for pt's who are on isolation, but a lot of times, those stethoscopes are lower quality and you can't hear well.
All the doctors and nurses I've seen tend to use their own.
How do you go about using your stethoscope and then cleaning it afterwards when in an isolation room? Do you keep it tucked down under your gown until you need to use it and then pull it out when you need it and then tuck it back in when you're done? Or do you keep it on the outside the whole time? Is there a "graceful" way to pull it out from the gown and tuck it back in? I feel like every time I've done this, I look like a complete freak who is fighting with an invisible ghost underneath my gown, lol.
When done, what's your process for cleaning it and washing your hands in order to avoid contamination, etc? Do you do it while you're still in the room or wait until you leave? Do you put on new gloves before wiping it down? Or do you not need to do that as long as you wash your hands after?
What type of wipe should you be using to wipe down your stethoscope? The one with the blue top or the red top? I feel like the red-top one is stronger and I'm not sure if this will damage my stethoscope.
In regards to note-pad/pen, sometimes I need to write something down, then I feel like I'm contaminating those things if I've already touched the patient and then I have to wipe down my pad/pen when I leave.
Should I take off my gloves, hand sanitize, write, then sanitize, then put on new gloves? That seems excessive and very "interruptory" (I know that's not a word). However, I am worried if I wait until I'm done that I'm going to forget what I needed to write down.
Also, do you take off your gloves and then put on clean gloves before typing something into the computer if there is a computer in the room? Or do you use the same gloves (I'm thinking this is def a no-no and I def don't do that) or do you take off your gloves and just use your bare hands? How often does environmental services tend to clean the keyboards? Or, again, does it even matter as long as you're washing your hands/sanitizing when you leave?
I just get all confused/tripped up when it comes to this area. I see people doing so many different things and I want to do it the right way to protect both myself and all of the patients on the floor.
Sorry if this seems stupid/common sense, but I just can't get down a good routine for this. Any advise or tips/tricks would be very welcome.
P.S - I know I mentioned above that I don't have an issue with donning/removal of PPE, but now that I think of it, sometimes I see people take off their gloves last, so that they don't have to touch their gown. I see why this would make sense, especially if you don't have to wear a mask, since it seems like the only reason they want you to take off the gloves first is so that you aren't touching your face mask and getting close to your face with a dirty glove. Even with a face-mask, sometimes I am tempted to leave my gloves on until the end, so that I don't have to touch the gown, especially if the gown is a bit soiled or the linen thing in the room is full and you end up touching the other gowns in there by accident when putting yours in.
Again, any advice/help is greatly appreciated!
As far as the stethoscope goes I always wipe mine down w/ appropriate cleanser wipe ( per hospital policy cleaner disinfecting wipes ) between each patient anyways. But, if there is a stethoscope in the isolation room I use that one unless there is an issue with not being able to hear properly through it. Your facility (clinical site) should have an infection control policy about this too. Best thing would be to ask your instructor about policies at that clinical site. Good question. Hope you find the answers you are looking for.
Last edit by Crush on Feb 19