Stand down

Stand down.

Two of the most beautiful words in the English language.

To me it means that the case is cancelled.

The patient is better.

Surgery is no longer required.

17 minutes ago the patient was dying and would certainly die without surgical intervention.

15 minutes ago I got a page.

15 minutes ago I was talking to the nursing supervisor about the urgent need for surgery.

15 minutes ago I was calling and waking the scrub tech up and saying there was an urgent case.

10 minutes ago I was changing into scrubs in the locker room.

9 minutes ago I was getting report from the emergency room while simultaneously putting the case into the computer.

9 minutes ago I was checking the surgeon’s credentials at this hospital.

7 minutes ago I was picking the case in the basement.

6 minutes ago I was taking the bed apart and putting the foot and head back on the bed.

5 minutes ago I was leaving the scrub tech opening and walking post haste down the hall to the ED.

5 minutes ago I was approaching the knot of people in blue scrubs standing outside the patient’s ED cubicle.

5 minutes ago the anesthesiologist was smiling at me with his eyes.

5 minutes ago the surgeon was apologizing to me about calling me in.

5 minutes ago I was asking if the operating room was being stood down.

4 minutes ago I received confirmation we were being stood down.

Being stood down can be a mixed bag.

It either means the patient is making marked improvement.

Or they are past the time when surgical intervention would save their life.

Thank goodness, this was the marked improvement one.

I walked back to the OR with the CRNA.

I confirmed with the scrub tech that we were being stood down.

The scrub tech and I broke down the room and took the set to SPD to be sterilized.

I confirmed that were was another emergency set that could be used.

Otherwise the SPD tech would be called in to sterilize the set.

I told the scrub tech I was impressed by their hustle in getting to the hospital so fast.

And then we left to go back to our houses.

To go back to bed.

I called the supervisor on my way out of the property.

To tell her we had been stood down and to call us if we were needed.

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