Evaluation of post-anesthesia care in post-anesthesia care unit: A cross-sectional study at Vihiga county referral hospital, Kenya
Objectives: Many mishaps in post-anesthesia care units have been attributed to inadequate patient monitoring and inadequate staff. Kenya National Anesthesia Guidelines facilitate specialized patients’ care during this critical period. Data on compliance with these guidelines is lacking in Kenya. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the design, equipment, staffing and discharge criteria at Vihiga County Hospital post-anesthesia care unit.
Design: A cross-sectional study design was used. The methods of data collection used were observation of the post-anesthesia care unit and interviewing of recovery nurses. A standard checklist derived from the Kenya National Anesthesia Guidelines was used for data collection. Microsoft Excel was used for data analysis. The results were presented in bar graphs and pie charts.
Setting: The study was carried out at the post-anesthesia care unit at Vihiga County Referral Hospital (VCRH) in Kenya.
Participants: The participants in the study were nurses offering services at the Vihiga County Referral Hospital post-anesthesia care unit.
Results: Post-debridement cases (44%) were the most common cases in the post-anesthesia care unit followed by post-herniorrhaphy cases (13%). The overall availability of post-anesthesia care equipment was 28%. Recovery nurse to patient ratio was 1:3 with only 50% of the nurses being specifically trained to provide post-anesthesia care. No standard discharge scoring systems were used in the unit.
Conclusion: The post-anesthesia care unit was small and hence congested. There was an acute shortage of both basic and life support equipment. There was inadequate staffing with various cadres such as pediatric recovery nurses missing.