Setting up sterile fields in advance in the Cath Lab.

Some Cath Labs set up tables with some supplies prepped and ready to go at all times, specifically when they go home for the day. Looking to see what others are doing regarding this practice in the Cath Labs.

Based on the AORN standards, sterile fields should be prepared as close as possible to the time of use and should be maintained and monitored constantly.  Sterility of unattended items cannot be ensured without direct observation. Event-related sources of possible contamination can occur at any time. There is also concern with covering the sterile field, as removing a table cover may result in a part of the cover that was below the table level being drawn above the table level or air currents drawing microorganisms from a nonsterile area to the sterile field.

AORN standards are guides not directives …it’s not clearly stated that you can’t. Is this  practice discouraged as a routine practice in your Cath Labs?

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