Operating Room Protocols for HCIRs



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9AM - 5PM CST (M-F)

Faculty: By Erin Azuse, RN BSN


Successful Completion: Complete entire module, complete the exam with a passing score of 80% or better, and complete the evaluation form.


Estimated Time to Complete Activity: 60 minutes.


CEUs: HIPAA Exams is authorized by IACET to offer 0.1 CEUs for this program.  CEU Information


Free Certification of Completion available instantly for download or printing upon successful completion.


This course is designed for the Health Care Industry Representative who will function within the perioperative setting. Operating rooms have strict regulations due to patient safety concerns. This course will provide the Health Care Industry Representative with the essential knowledge to properly advocate for patient and workplace safety, as well as maintain the privacy and security of patient's health information.

Course includes a video and audio component with stand-alone exam.

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Learning Objectives

  • Explain the HIPAA Privacy and Security Rule
  • Identify methods of bloodborne pathogen transmission and prevention
  • Explain the concept of a sterile field in the perioperative setting
  • Review how a Health Care Industry Representative may function within the operating room
  • Discuss what constitutes ethical interactions between a Health Care Industry Representative and a Health Care Professional

Target Audience

Health Care Industry Representative in the Preoperative Setting

Table of Contents

Commonly referred to as: Operating Room Protocols and Orientation to the Operating Room For the Sales Professional

Operating Room Protocols for HCIRs

Table of Contents:

  • Guidelines for HCIRs in the Perioperative Setting
  • Legal Notice
  • Purpose of Course
  • Learning Objectives
  • AORN Position Statement
  • HIPAA Privacy and Security
  • OSHA Bloodborne Pathogens and Prevention of Transmissible Infections
  • Occupational Safety
  • Radiation
  • Biohazardous Waste
  • Electrical Safety
  • Hand Hygiene and Principles of Asepsis per AORN Guidelines
  • Guidelines for Hand Hygiene
  • Guidelines for Sterile Technique
  • Practices to Reduce the Spread of Transmissible Infections
  • Creating and Maintaining a Sterile Field
  • AdvaMed Code of Ethics on Interactions with Health Care Professionals
  • End of Course Exam

Course Content Example 1:

AORN Position Statement

In 2014, the Association of periOperative Registered Nurses (AORN) released a position statement on the role of the Health Care Industry Representative in the perioperative setting.

  • AORN recognizes that Health Care Industry Representatives (HCIRs) bring their knowledge and expertise to the operating room but believes that there must be restrictions on their role within that setting.
  • Representatives should work in conjunction with the Perioperative Nurse and Perioperative Administrator.

The Perioperative Nurse is responsible for:

  • Carrying out all core nursing activities
  • Verifying that the patient has been informed about the presence of health care industry representative
  • Monitoring the representative and facilitating their services to the team

The Preoperative Administrator is responsible for:

  • Making sure the representative is educated on all procedures and technology that will be encountered in the operating room
  • Developing policies and procedures that define the representative's role within the OR

Course Content Example 2:

Practices to Reduce the Spread of Transmissible Infections

  • Prior to entering the operating room, all personnel should perform hand hygiene. This is the most effective method of preventing and reducing the spread of infection.

Proper OR Attire

All personnel entering the OR should wear:

  • Clean scrubs
  • Clean or single-use long-sleeved jacket with cuffs down to the wrist
  • Surgical head covers that cover all hair, scalp, facial hair, and hair at the nape of the neck
  • Surgical mask to cover the mouth or nose when open, sterile supplies are present

Proper attire decreases the shedding and dispersal of bacteria, protecting the patient and the surgical site.

Personal items such as briefcases, cell phones or tablets should be cleaned with a low-level disinfectant prior to being brought into a semi-restricted or restricted area.

Course Content Example #3:

The Operating Room (OR) Environment

The operating room (OR) is a specialized room within a hospital or other healthcare facility that is specifically designed and equipped for the performance of surgical procedures.

Strict OR protocols are in place that must be followed such as:

  • Aseptic technique: Procedures used to prevent the spread of microorganisms by eliminating all potential sources of contamination in a sterile environment
  • Sterile processing: Specialized cleaning, disinfection, and sterilization of medical devices to eliminate all living microorganisms

The group of individuals at the core of these protocols in an operating room environment is the surgical services team. There are several components of the surgical services team, including the:

  • Sterile team: Surgeons, assistants, and surgical technologists
  • Unsterile team: Anesthesiologist, circulator, environmental services, and sterile processing staff

There are three areas of the operating room, which includes the restricted, semi-restricted, and unrestricted zones. Individuals working in the operating room play a critical role in identifying and mitigating hazards in all three zones to ensure the safe and successful completion of surgical procedures.

This can include:

  • Sharp tools/objects
  • Electrical hazards
  • Radiation exposure
  • Hazardous materials

Course Content Example #4:

Routes of Transmission of an Infectious Agent

Infections can be transmitted through:

  • Direct Transmission:
  • Contact Transmission: Through direct skin-to-skin, mucosa-to-mucosa, or mucosa-to-skin contact with an infected person through touching, kissing, sexual intercourse, or prolonged close contact
  • Droplet Transmission: Exposure to sprays of saliva and respiratory secretions expelled during coughing, sneezing, speaking, and spitting
  • Inoculation: Direct introduction of the agent into skin or mucosa, often through bites or wounds
  • Transplacental Transmission: From mother to baby during pregnancy
  • Indirect Transmission:
  • Vehicle-Borne: Occurs through ingestion of contaminated food, water, blood, serum, plasma, or other biological products
  • Vector-Borne: Through the bite of an infected arthropod or other living carrier, such as Malaria transmitted by the Anopheles mosquito, or the plague transmitted by rats

Preventing the spread of infection within healthcare settings, especially in operating rooms, is critical to the safety of patients and staff. The operating room staff must prioritize control of transmission of infection and principles of aseptic technique to ensure compliance during surgical procedures.


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