Quality Leaders: Diane Skorupski
As the associate vice president for perioperative services at UF Health Shands Hospital, most of her duties are administrative. But she is an O.R. nurse at heart and knows that in order to be effective in helping staff members provide the best care to patients, she needs to see what they are experiencing in the operating room every day.
“I want them to know I am there for them,” Skorupski said. “I think it is everybody’s responsibility to do the best they can, and it is up to me as a leader to make sure they have the tools they need to do a good job.”
Ensuring staff members are successful in providing quality care to patients is job No. 1 to Skorupski. With staff members and surgeons, she helped lead the department of surgery’s Surgical Safety Initiative, which earned first place honors during the poster competition at the UF Health Quality Retreat in July .
Other projects she has worked on recently include collaborating with surgeons and radiologists to tackle the challenge of ensuring correct surgical counts. Although some suture threads are as fine as a strand of hair and needles almost too small to see, all items need to be accounted for following a procedure. They rolled out the new process in April, complete with posters showing what various items look like on X-ray.
“I always think if that were me on the table, or someone I loved, how would I want their health care delivered?” she said. “When patients are under anesthesia they are defenseless. They need a team looking out for their best interests. We need to keep that bar high.”