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Surgical Assistant, First Assist, CVOR

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Emory UniversityAtlanta, GA
  • JOB DESCRIPTION: The surgical assistant/first assistant is responsible for assisting the surgeon under direct and indirect supervision throughout preoperative, intraoperative, and post-operative duties and procedures as needed.
  • The surgical assistant/first assistant provide aid in exposure, hemostasis, closure, and other intraoperative technical functions that help the surgeon carry out a safe operation with optimal results for the patient.
  • The preoperative phase includes, but is not limited to safe positioning, assist circulator and anesthesia provider in preparation of the patient.
  • The intraoperative phase includes, but not limited to performing specific tasks according to individual surgeon preference utilizing appropriate techniques.
  • The postoperative phase includes, but not limited to, application of specific dressing material, assist in transfer of patient and following patient to recovery if needed or directed by surgeon.
  • Providing visualization of the operative site by the following, but not limited to: Appropriate placement and securing of retractors with or without padding.
  • Packing with sponges.
  • Digital manipulation of tissue.
  • Suctioning, irrigating, or sponging.
  • Manipulation of suture materials (e.g. loops, tags, running sutures).
  • Proper use of body mechanics to prevent obstruction of the surgeons view.
  • Utilizing appropriate techniques to assist with hemostasis.
  • Permanent: clamping and/or cauterizing vessels or tissue; tying and/or ligating clamped vessels or tissue; applying hemostatic clips; placing local hemostatic agents.
  • Temporary: applying tourniquets and demonstrating awareness of the indications/contraindications for use with knowledge of side effects of extended use; applying vessel loops; applying non-crushing clamps; applying direct digital pressure.
  • Utilizing appropriate techniques to assist with closure of body planes.
  • Utilizing running or interrupted subcutaneous sutures with absorbable or non-absorbable material.
  • Utilizing subcuticular closure technique with or without adhesive skin closure strips.
  • Closing skin with method indicated by surgeon (suture, staples, etc
  • Postoperative subcutaneous injection of local anesthetic agent as directed by the surgeon.
  • Selecting and applying appropriate wound dressing: liquid or spray occlusive materials, absorbent material affixed with tape of circumferential wrapping; immobilizing dressing (soft or rigid).
  • Upon completion of the procedure, the patient shall be evaluated for any possible damage from positioning which will include assessment of the skin.
  • The surgeon shall convey the exact position that will give the best exposure for the surgical procedure.
  • The surgical assistant will carry out this order.
  • Consideration will be given to the patient's comfort and safety.
  • Points of pressure shall be padded: elbows, heels, knees, eyes, face, and axillary region.
  • Circulation shall not be impaired.
  • Nerve damage shall be guarded against.
  • MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS: Graduate and /or certification from surgical assisting programs accredited through ABSA, NSAA, or ARC/STSA. 2 years of surgical assistant/first assistant experience is required.
  • Some areas may require specialized experience.
  • (i.e. in cardiothoracic surgery, two years of directly related experience is required)
  • PHYSICAL REQUIREMENTS (Medium): 20-50 lbs; 0-33% of the work day (occasionally); 11-25 lbs, 34-66% of the workday (frequently); 01-10 lbs, 67-100% of the workday (constantly); Lifting 50 lbs max; Carrying of objects up to 25 lbs; Occasional to frequent standing & walking, Occasional sitting, Close eye work (computers, typing, reading, writing), Physical demands may vary depending on assigned work area and work tasks.
  • ENVIRONMENTAL FACTORS: Factors affecting environment conditions may vary depending on the assigned work area and tasks.
  • Environmental exposures include, but are not limited to: Blood-borne pathogen exposure Bio-hazardous waste Chemicals/gases/fumes/vapors Communicable diseases Electrical shock , Floor Surfaces, Hot/Cold Temperatures, Indoor/Outdoor conditions, Latex, Lighting, Patient care/handling injuries, Radiation , Shift work, Travel may be required.
  • Use of personal protective equipment, including respirators, environmental conditions may vary depending on assigned work area and work tasks.

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