On the day of surgery: how long does preventable disruption prolong the patient journey?

Al-Hakim, Latif and Gong, Xiao Yan (2012) On the day of surgery: how long does preventable disruption prolong the patient journey? International Journal of Health Care Quality Assurance, 25 (4). pp. 322-342. ISSN 0952-6862

Abstract

Purpose - Disruption considerably prolongs session times for surgery, affects the quality of patient care, and prolongs waiting lists. In addition, there is a strong relationship between disruption and surgical error. This research provides a platform for healthcare services to identify the sources of preventable disruption affecting operative time within the perioperative process and to effectively reduce it. Design/methodology/approach - Events inside and outside operating rooms that disturb the operative time were recorded for 22 elective surgeries over the period of five months. Disruption events were classified according to the hospital’s requirements and the findings were reviewed by the surgical teams. Lean thinking approaches were used to achieve the purpose of this study. Findings – Preventable disruption caused an increase in surgical time of approximately 25%. Preventable disruption consisted of poor information flow, failure to follow concepts of methods study, lack of communication and lack of coordination. Coordination failures were the main reason for disruption followed by the lack of following the principles of motion economy. Originality/value – Surgical disruption has substantial financial implications for hospitals. This research indicates that it is possible to considerably reduce surgical session time by eliminating preventable disruption. Such additional time could be utilised to deal with the pressure of emergency cases, reduce the waiting lists for elective surgery, increase operating room utilisation and reduce medical errors.


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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Permanent restricted access to published version due to publisher copyright policy (Emerald).
Depositing User: Dr Latif Al-Hakim
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Business and Law - School of Management and Marketing
Date Deposited: 20 Aug 2012 07:53
Last Modified: 03 Jul 2013 01:11
Uncontrolled Keywords: disruption; medical errors; lean thinking; operating room; Australia; coordination; customer services quality; patient care; process efficiency; surgery
Fields of Research (FOR2008): 15 Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services > 1503 Business and Management > 150313 Quality Management
11 Medical and Health Sciences > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111709 Health Care Administration
15 Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services > 1503 Business and Management > 150312 Organisational Planning and Management
Socio-Economic Objective (SEO2008): E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970111 Expanding Knowledge in the Medical and Health Sciences
Identification Number or DOI: doi: 10.1108/09526861211221509
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/21261

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