Idaho Surgery Center Honors Perioperative Nurses With Newspaper Ad

Perioperative Nurses Week runs Nov. 7-13, and one surgery center in Idaho is honoring its perioperative nurses with an ad in the local newspaper.


Pend Oreille Surgery Center in Ponderay created this ad (pdf) in recognition of its perioperative nurses and their talent and passion for quality care. The ad features headshots of the ASC's perioperative nurses, along with their names, and describes the role perioperative nurses play during a patient's visit to the surgery center.


Kris Sabo, RN, executive director of Pend Oreille Surgery Center, explains why perioperative nurses were and still are critical to the ASC's success, how the idea for the ad came about and why the ASC's leadership believed it was important to honor its perioperative nurses in this fashion.


Q: Tell us about your ASC and why you are so proud of your perioperative nurses?

Kris Sabo:
We are a small center in rural North Idaho with physician-owners who chose to build this center for all the right reasons. We wanted to improve access to quality healthcare in an otherwise underserved area. Unfortunately, like many small business startups in these past three years, our timing wasn't very good. Our seven physician-owners have faced challenge after challenge with grace and determination and remain convinced that we will survive because we give GREAT care. Our patients love us, and by that I mean they love our nurses. Nine of our 14 staff members opened the doors and performed our first case. In fact, one of our nurses volunteered to be our "survey" case, coming to work each day NPO during our survey window.


This group has grown with and defined Pend Oreille Surgery Center. That is why I wanted to do something exceptional for them. Our nurses, support and business office staff has remained dedicated to POSC through the tough times. Nothing would make them happier than to be working full shifts, five days a week. However, we are just not there yet. I feel fortunate that we have only lost a few and I understand that [the reason they left] was a financial decision.

Q: How did you get the idea to run an ad in your local paper?


KS: About two months ago, AORN suggested members write a letter to the editor of their local paper regarding perioperative nursing. They even provided some suggestions for talking points for the letter. I printed the information and gave it to my staff. What they brought me was a 560 word letter to their patients! I was so touched by this that I decided to incorporate this into a paid advertisement rather than submit it as a letter to the editor and risk it not being printed. The cost for a 1/4 page, color ad in the Sunday paper (which covers two counties) was over $1000.00. I should add that the entire letter did not fit in a 1/4 page ad so I was faced with increasing the ad to 1/2 page or editing the content. I sent an email to all of the investors explaining what I wanted to do and related costs. I received a unanimous "GO FOR IT"!

Q: What do you hope your perioperative nurses take away from this gesture?

KS: This acknowledgement is from our owners to our dedicated staff to let them know that we recognize their individual sacrifices. We realize that they could have taken positions elsewhere but they chose to stay. We realize that it has been tough but we appreciate that they always bring their best, and a smile, to each day. We realize that THEY are the reason we have a fantastic reputation and a 97 percent patient satisfaction rating. And we know that these beautiful, smiling faces are the best marketing assets we have. Perioperative nurses deserve recognition but our nurses (and all our staff) deserve a standing ovation! That is why we did this.


Learn more about Pend Oreille Surgery Center at

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