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Safety Awareness Committee Report

owens-pattiby Patricia A. Owens, RN, MHA, CMLSO, CNOR

The ASLMS Safety Committee was charged with with the mission of forwarding recommendations to the Board to promote the safe, effective and ethical use of, and education for, energy-based devices. 

The committee members include Dale Koop, Ph.D. as Chairman along with Raymond Lanzafame, MD, MBA, FACS, Patti Owens, RN, MHA, CMLS, CNOR, Mathew Avram, MD, JD, Brian Biesman, MD, Deanne Mraz Robinson, MD and Rebecca Sprague, RN, NP-C.

The committee’s first conference call was conducted by Dale Koop on May 28. The first task was to examine the ASLMS website and analyze the existing Standards of Practice. The last update to the standards was in 2008 and 2012, respectively.

Several issues were discussed within the committee meeting. The Procedural Skill and Technique Proficiency for Laser Medicine and Surgery in Dermatology Standard proved confusing to the committee.  The charter of the Safety Committee was reviewed, as committee members questioned whether safety or proficiency was the focus. The committee decided to concentrate more on safe practices.

Committee consensus prioritized the first assignment to the updating of ASLMS’s Standards of Practice. Eleven years ago, the standards were first approved focusing exclusively on laser technology. Presently, the society incorporates energy-based devices including radiofrequency, ultrasound and light and there is no mention of these devices in our website’s professional standards.

The committee also wanted to eliminate duplication of information. Group consensus desired to refer members to national agencies and current existing regulations which should serve as the infrastructure for individuals developing their facility safety programs. In addition, the safety committee wants to address different sections that need to be reflective of current practice, for example, as in Standards of Care for Perioperative Nursing. Nurses are still employed in perioperative areas, however, nurses and allied health members are also engaged in the utilization of aesthetic lasers and energy-based devices.

Our final goal was to survey our members and conduct a gap analysis in order identify knowledge deficits to plan future safety activities.  The next safety meeting will be scheduled in September 2019.

The American Society for Laser Medicine and Surgery is the world’s largest scientific organization dedicated to promoting research, education and high standards of clinical care in the field of medical laser applications. It provides a forum for the exchange of scientific information and participation in communicating the latest developments in laser medicine and surgery to clinicians, research investigators, government and regulatory agencies, and the public.

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