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Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Role of the R.N. Circulator?

  • Acts as a patient advocate while the pt. is under anesthesia.
  • Manages overall nursing care in the operating room.
  • Maintains a safe environment for the patient and staff.
  • Carries out their duties outside of the sterile area.
  • Manages all of the necessary care inside the room.
  • Monitors and observes the team from a wide perspective.
  • Uses assessment, critical thinking, and planning skills to direct pt. care and the activities of the team.

How many staff do you employ in the O.R at MMC?

Over two hundred RNs, Surgical Technologists and Peri-Operative Service Technicians work in the O.R.

What kind of surgery is done in the MMC O.R.?

We are a Level I Trauma Center with 29 O.R. Suites. We do Cardiac, Thoracic, Vascular, Endo- Vascular, GYN, GYN-Oncology, Plastics, Robotic, Bariatric, Pediatric, General, Trauma, Neuro (brain & spine), Dental, Orthopedic, Ortho-Trauma, and Genitourinary surgeries.

How many nurses are certified in their specialty?

We currently have 71% of eligible nurses certified in our specialty of Peri-Operative Nursing /CNOR.

What specialty and shift will I work when I am done the Nurse Internship?

We do not hire into a specific specialty or shift. The Internship is 6 months long and a lot can change in that time. As we get closer to the 5 month mark we know what cluster and shift you will be working. Your placement is all based on the needs of the O.R.

Do I need O.R. experience to be hired for the Nurse Internship in the O.R.?

No, if you are hired into the Internship then you have no O.R. experience. We hire new grads and nurses with experience in other specialties.

Is there a commitment to the O.R. after the Nurse Internship is complete?

Yes, we ask for a verbal commitment of one year full time after your orientation of 6 months is complete.

What type of advancement is available to staff?

After you have worked in the O.R. for 2 yrs. you are encouraged to take the CNOR exam. There is a Clinical Ladder Advancement Program that you may participate in by following the guidelines. We have many staff members that are members of O.R. and Hospital wide committees.

What national organization are you affiliated with?

We follow AORN recommendations for policies and procedures. We have a local chapter that meets at MMC monthly and many of our nurses participate by attending or serving as a chair person.

What is the most difficult part of the Internship?

Most nurses had little to no exposure to the O.R. in nursing school. Hearing is a skill that takes about 3 months to develop. Everyone wears a mask, they are at the sterile field, and they are asking for equipment and instrumentation that you have never heard of.

What should I think about before applying to the O.R.?

Remember that patient interaction is very limited. It is about 3 min. from the time the pt. comes in to the O.R. until they are asleep. If you think this is something you need to feel fulfilled then O.R. nursing is not for you.

What is one word to describe an O.R. nurse?

Advocate

 

Maine Medical Center is a member of the MaineHealth System