Your Health Care Team Thoracic Surgery LVRS
There are many groups of people who will be taking care of you after your surgery. Each member of your health care team plays a vital part in your surgical recovery and experience. All members focus on you—the patient. There is a list on the next page that explains the roles of each member of your health care team.
This is the person who is doing your surgery. Your surgeon helps coordinate the rest of the health care team around your special needs.
The anesthesiologist is the doctor or specialty trained anesthesia nurse who provides anesthesia and care for you during your surgery.
Fellows and Residents
Fellows and Residents are doctors who are assigned to Thoracic Surgery as part of their training. Fellows are surgeons who have finished their general surgery rotations and are getting special training in cardiothoracic surgery. Residents are doctors who are in a surgical rotation at present.
Advanced Practice Providers
This team is made up of Nurse Practitioners and Physician’s Assistants. They are health care providers who work closely with your surgeon. They are involved in every aspect of your care from pre-surgery work-up to your final post-surgery clinic visit.
The nurses will be the main people taking care of you on the unit. They help give you your medicines, teach you and your family, and work closely with the health care team. The nurses will assess you throughout their shift to make sure that you are safe and share that information with your surgeon.
They are members of the health care team who do a large part of the bedside care for you after your surgery.
A pharmacist is a health care provider with special training in medicines and their interactions. There is a pharmacist on cardiothoracic (B4/5) unit daily who assists the team in making sure your medicines are correct, safe, and effective.
Case Manager or Social Work
Every patient is assigned a case manager or social worker. This person helps to assess and arrange any special needs you may have for discharge home. This might include lab draws, home health, or rehab placement.
This includes staff such as the surgeon’s secretary, the cardiothoracic (B4/5) unit secretary, Thoracic Clinical Nurse Specialist and the management. Your surgeon’s secretary will help to arrange for needed tests and appointments as well as answer your questions and fill out FMLA or disability forms. The B4/5 unit secretary helps with the daily needs of the cardiac unit (such as answer the phones and arrange for your transport to tests). The Thoracic Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS) will stop in throughout your stay to make sure your questions are answered and assist you as needed. The CNS will also be giving you a food diary on the day of discharge to help make sure you are getting enough calories when you are at home. All support staff help to make things run smoothly and are an outlet for you if you have concerns or questions.
The Clinical Nutritionist will meet with you to help you find the best ways to meet your caloric needs to help you recover from surgery while in the hospital and at home.
Respiratory therapy will visit you throughout the day to make sure that you are able to cough and deep breathe well. They may also carry out breathing treatments to help loosen up secretions to help you cough better.
Housekeeping and Maintenance
Housekeeping works to make sure your room and the building are clean. Maintenance works to make sure everything at the hospital is in working order.
Technicians (Lab & x-ray)
Technicians help to make sure your health care team is getting the needed data about you to make decisions about your care. Lab technicians, or phlebotomists, draw your blood. X-ray technicians take x-rays of your chest and other body parts.
Consult services may include but not be limited to: physical therapy, occupational therapy, or diabetes management. Every patient has their own special needs after surgery. Your surgeon consults these services to tailor your needs after your surgery.
The information provided should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed physician should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
Last Updated: 08/08/2012
Copyright © 08/08/2012 University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics Authority. All rights reserved. Produced by the Department of Nursing. HF#7396
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