CountOn is a reusable, low-cost linen gauze-sorting caddy. CountOn helps Ethiopian surgical nurses separate and count used pieces of gauze at the end of a surgery—catalyzing a lifesaving practice that is currently ill-defined and mentally taxing. An accurate and efficient pre- and post-op gauze count is necessary to prevent gauze retention, which can lead to fatal surgical site infections. In the US, technical tools such as RFID barcodes, and x-ray-detectable radiopaque strips embedded in gauze support nurses in following gauze counting protocol. In Ethiopian hospitals, these resources are not readily available due to expense and customs regulation.
CountOn is a simple yet powerful tool for nurses to streamline the gauze-counting process. It is fashioned on-site out of existing surgical linens by hospital tailors using detailed patterns we provide. The caddy is paired with two instructional posters advising nurses about the proper procedure for pre- and post-surgery gauze count. Both the caddy pattern and the posters will be distributed to hospitals by our partner organization Lifebox.
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