The Surgical Services Department consists of four areas that combine to provide care in the period before, during, and after surgery. These areas and their function are:

Outpatient Surgery Department

The Outpatient Surgery Department at Twin Cities Hospital is part of the $10 Million dollar surgery expansion project and opened its doors for business on October 16, 2006.

This unit consists of a large reception area with a registrar assigned there for convenience in the admitting process. A hospital auxiliary member helps provide check-in and assigns the family member/significant other a restaurant style pager for ease in contacting them with information about their loved one or when the surgeon is ready to speak with them after surgery. A large wall-mounted LCD televison, daily newspaper, and complimentary coffee ease the waiting period for family and friends.

The actual Outpatient Surgery area consists of a pre-admission office, 6 outpatient surgery beds, and 7 outpatient step-down beds. This unit is staffed with registered nurses and one licensed practical nurse. Family members/significant others are permitted to remain with the patient until he/she departs for the operating room, and are permitted back with the patient when he/she arrives back in the Outpatient Surgery area after surgery. Here, patients are interviewed before surgery, a physical assessment is done, doctor's orders are carried out, patients are dressed for surgery, an intravenous line is started, and patient's blood pressure, pulse, and temperature taken. A patient may be shaved if required and if having extremity surgery, the correct extremity will be marked. Patients and family are also prepared emotionally and educated prior to and following their procedure. Prior to surgery, an anesthesiologist and operating room nurse also conduct interviews. The anesthesiologist and operating room nurse then escort the patient into the actual operating room. Following surgery, the patient either goes to the Post-Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU) or depending on the anesthesia used, may return immediately to the Outpatient Surgery area. Before a patient may be discharged to home, the following requirements must be met:

  • Blood pressure, pulse, breathing, and temperature within normal limits for 30 minutes before discharge
  • Be able to take fluids
  • Have minimal nausea, vomiting, or dizziness
  • Be able to walk without assistance (or same as they were able to ambulate before surgery)
  • Be alert and oriented as before surgery
  • Be able to urinate
  • Have a responsible adult present to accompany home
  • Have absence of severe pain
  • Have absence of excessive bleeding

Although Outpatient Surgery strives to expedite the surgical experience, sometimes things happen that they have no control over including: a patient needing emergency or urgent surgery, labs that need to be repeated, surgeon late, other patients late, surgery taking longer on another patient than what was scheduled or expected etc. This could alter the time-frame for an individual's surgery by either pushing up the time or pushing it behind the approximate scheduled time. We ask for patience when this occurs and know that the staff is doing all they can to accommodate our customers.

Operating Rooms

The Surgery Center consists of 3 operating rooms (two large, orthopedic rooms), 2 minor operating rooms, and a cystoscopy room.

The primary goal of the operating room is to provide individualized patient care delivered by highly trained, specialized staff during the actual surgery. Each operating room has a minimum of a registered nurse, scrub technician, and an anesthesiologist. Staffing is adjusted to meet patient needs and the needs of the surgeon. The Operating Room uses an on-call system to insure availability of staff 24 hours a day.

Our Operating Rooms service the following specialties:

  • Orthopedics
  • Orthopedic Spine
  • General Surgery
  • Thoracic/Vascular
  • Urology
  • Ears, Nose, Throat
  • GYN
  • Podiatry

Post Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU)

The Post Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU) at Twin Cities Hospital is also part of the $10 Million dollar surgery expansion project and opened its doors for business on October 16, 2006. It consists of 6 critical care beds, giving the capability to recover up to 6 patients simultaneously, whether they come from the Operating Room, the Cath Lab, or X-Ray.

The PACU provides patient care immediately after surgery and/or invasive procedures for inpatients and outpatients. The PACU is staffed with 2 critical care/PACU trained nurses. They also use an on-call system to insure availability to staff 24 hours a day.

Once outpatients are recovered in the PACU, they return to the Outpatient Surgery Unit for further observation and then are discharged to home. Inpatients are recovered and then transferred back to the Medical-Surgical-Telemetry Unit.

Central Sterile Processing

The responsibilities of employees in Central Sterile Processing (CS) are process and sterilize instrumentation and reusable equipment, as well as order, stock, and maintain supplies for the Operating Rooms. Additionally, they are responsible for collection, decontamination, and sterilization of reusable items used throughout the hospital. CS has the capability for steam and hydrogen peroxide sterilization and is staffed with one Sterile Processing Supervisor and one Sterile Processing Technician.