Operating department practitioners work with surgeons, anaesthetists, nurses and theatre support workers so that procedures carried out in the operating theatre are safe and effective and help ensure a successful outcome for patients.
ODPs have an important role in the three phases of perioperative care which are:
- the anaesthetic phase - assisting the patient before surgery, preparing specialist equipment and drugs
- the surgical phase - working alongside the surgeon, providing the correct surgical instruments and materials
- the recovery phase - assessing and monitoring the patient
As an ODP, you would work mostly in surgical operating departments, but you could also work in other critical care areas in the hospital, such as the emergency department (ED), intensive care units (ICUs) and maternity units.
Your main responsibilities would include:
- Checking the cleanliness of the operating theatre and ensure it is properly prepared
- Ensuring equipment such as drips, instruments, dressings and swabs are available for each procedure
- Ensuring that any specialist equipment is available for specific procedures
- Providing instruments to the surgical team during an operation, such as scalpels, clamps, forceps, scissors and cannulas
- Monitoring instruments during each procedure
- Keeping accurate records
- Ordering drugs and other items for the surgical operating department