One thing that was a pet peeve of mine is not labeling items. I’m a bit of an organizing freak when it comes to work. There are several reasons to use labels on multiple different areas.

Label all Autoclaved items!!! Autoclaved items have a 6 month shelf life for sterility. Some people may think, “we use these spay packs everyday so it doesn’t matter” well it does matter. If items don’t get rotated properly or something gets overlooked. Why chance it? It takes a few extra seconds to write the date and what item it is on the package. This also will help anyone that is not completely familiar with the instruments (ex. An intern or new employee)

Label open drug bottles, vials, bags, etc. On liquids, especially, write the dates they were opened. This is extremely important for items with a very short shelf life like Propofol. If you label open medications bottles you can avoid having more than one open bottle at a time which will make inventory much easier.

Label any mixtures you have made. If you have added any medications to an I.V. bag, write how many mls and what medication. Doing this will avoid any serious consequences.

Labeling is very important all over the clinic, medicines, cabinets, cupboard, etc. Label so if someone walked through the door will know what’s going on. If you aren’t sure if you should label something, just do it. Better to label something than to take the risk. It only takes a few seconds.