OMAHA (KPTM)- If you take a walk around the Nebraska Medical Center these days, you’ll notice a crucial instrument missing from the necks of the doctors and nurses that work there… a stethoscope.
Nearly two weeks ago, the Med Center told doctors and nurses to leave their own stethoscopes at home - that instead, a brand new one would be provided to them in all hospital rooms as part of a new policy to help reduce hospital born infections. “It makes obvious sense to people.
When they hear about this project, they’re like, ‘yeah! Why haven’t we already done this?’” said Dr. Mark Rupp who introduced the idea to Med Center doctors. Since February 3rd, the heart of the hospital has been going strong with it’s individual stethoscope campaign. “It’s a really good stethoscope, and the doctors are pleased with it. They can listen to the heart and lungs just like they want to,” said Rupp.
In each of the 500 hospital rooms, patients are given their own stethoscope, which Rupp says decreases their chances of getting hospital born infections from bacteria that can grow on the surface of a stethoscope. “Rather than just get contaminated, and go from patient to patient, it stays there and is disinfected when that person is discharged from the hospital.” Which is good news for recovering surgery patients like Gina Behr, who can’t risk getting an infection. “I think it’s great because I don’t feel like I’m getting stuff from the next person’s room or gown.
These I’ve seen cleaned more than anybody ever cleans their stethoscope,” said Behr. Each of the stethoscopes cost about $100, and were paid for by the hospital. Doctor Rupp says, he hopes all hospitals across the Omaha metro adopt this same method.