Peer-Reviewed Journal Details
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Coyle D, Lowery AJ, Khan W, Waldron R, Barry K
Ir Med J
Successful introduction of ring-fenced inpatient surgical beds in a general hospital setting.
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This study aimed to assess the impact of ring-fenced inpatient general surgical beds on day of surgery (DOS) admission, duration of elective inpatient stay (DEIS), and cancellation rates over a 6 month period. In June 2010 17 of 60 surgical inpatient beds were decommissioned. The remainder (43) were ring-fenced for general surgery patients only. Comparative analysis examining admission rates, cancellation rates, and theatre activity was performed between a reference period (January-June 2010) and the study period (July-December 2010). Complexity of all operations was graded according to an index schedule of procedures. There was no difference between the reference and study periods in volumes of elective admissions (472 [53.03%] vs. 418 [4797%]) and emergency admissions (928 [50.03%] vs. 927 [49.97%]). DOS admissions increased 5-fold during the study period (38 [8.1%] vs. 190 [45.5%], P < 0.001). Average duration of elective inpatient stay reduced from 4.3 days to 3.06 days in the study period (P < 0.001). No difference was observed in volume of operations performed at all levels of complexity. There were 78 (58.2%) cancellations during the reference period and 56 (41.8%) during the study period with patient non-attendance the most common cause for cancellation in both periods. Ring-fenced surgical beds facilitated higher DOS admission rates and shorter duration of elective inpatient stay, leading to more efficient use of hospital resources.
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