Costs & Cost Controls

Latest Issue of OR Manager
December 2017
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Cost data persuade surgeons to be more frugal

Surgeons usually don’t have a high awareness of costs, partly because they haven’t had an easy way to know them. An unfortunate byproduct of this lack of knowledge can be higher OR costs. “Imagine what it’s like if, when you go to the grocery store, there are no price tags,…

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By: OR Manager
June 20, 2017
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Efforts to improve FCOTS may reduce overutilized OR time

Ccommon cost-saving strategies in the OR include increasing workflow efficiency, reducing turnover times, implementing standardized preoperative protocols, and improving surgical case scheduling and first case on-time starts (FCOTS). These interventions aim to decrease under- and overutilized time in the OR, but there is conflicting evidence about their economic value. Many…

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By: OR Manager
June 20, 2017
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Relationship between bariatric surgery outcomes and Medicare expenditures

Editor's Note Medicare payments for bariatric surgery are significantly lower at hospitals with low complication rates, and cost savings are most prominent in patients at highest risk for complications, this study finds. The analysis of 38,374 bariatric surgery patients found a strong correlation between complication rates and episode payments−hospitals in…

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By: Judy Mathias
June 12, 2017
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Study: QI measures reduce readmissions, cost savings vary

Editor's Note Quality improvement (QI) measures can be effective in reducing readmissions, relative to the status quo, but cost savings vary, this meta-analysis finds. In this review of 50 QI studies, interventions reduced readmissions by an average of 12.1% for heart failure patients and 6.3% among the general population. However,…

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By: Judy Mathias
June 1, 2017
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Effect of early discharge after surgery on costs

Editor's Note Early postoperative discharge after major inpatient surgery was associated with lower total surgical episode payments in this study. In this analysis of 639,943 Medicare beneficiaries undergoing colectomy, coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG), or total hip replacement, payments were significantly lower in hospitals with lowest vs highest length of…

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By: Judy Mathias
May 19, 2017
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Preference card cleanup projected to cut costs across departments

Fine-tuning physician preference cards to reduce instrument use and sterilization is a well-known way to cut costs, but one that is often hard to implement. At Bassett Healthcare (Cooperstown, New York), we had success with a simple intervention involving collaboration with nearly 50 surgeons across multiple departments. We reviewed more…

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By: OR Manager
May 17, 2017
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Choose the right linen service to match supply with demand

Linens and textiles may not be as exciting as the latest spinal device or miracle drug, but they are a mainstay of every healthcare setting. Quality matters, and costs associated with these high-use items can make a difference in a facility’s overall expenses. It’s essential to evaluate the best way…

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By: Paula DeJohn
May 17, 2017
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Effect of PSH elements on total joint outcomes

Editor's Note In this study, the use of preoperative and postoperative elements of a Perioperative Surgical Home model in total knee and hip patients was associated with improvements in operational outcomes. The study included 1,225 patients in a preintervention PSH group and 1,363 in a postintervention PSH group. Compared with…

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By: Judy Mathias
April 26, 2017
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Conscious sedation is safe for TAVR

Editor's Note Conscious sedation is a safe and viable option for anesthesia in patients having transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR), finds this study. The use of conscious sedation rather than general anesthesia was associated with: similar rates of adverse events (1.5% in both groups) shortened ICU (30 vs 96 hours)…

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By: Judy Mathias
April 11, 2017
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‘Training’ patients for surgery reduces LOS, costs

Editor's Note A home-based preoperative training program decreased hospital length of stay (LOS), reduced costs, and was well accepted by patients, this study finds. Elements of the Michigan Surgical Home and Optimization Program include improving the patient’s diet, reducing stress, breathing exercises, smoking cessation, and an emphasis on light physical…

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By: Judy Mathias
April 11, 2017
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