There are a lot of people who are looking for elective surgery. There are countless people who require emergency surgeries every day. It can be a significant problem for hospitals to manage operating room schedules. That is why it is helpful to rely on operating room scheduling software. There are a few significant challenges that hospital systems face when it comes to scheduling time in the operating room. Take a look at some of the biggest challenges below, and remember to reach out to a professional who can help with operating room scheduling.
Operating Room Turnover Is a Major Issue
First, one of the biggest issues related to operating room scheduling is operating room turnover. Even though it is helpful to try to keep procedures as short as possible, it is just as important to think about operating room turnover time. This refers to the amount of time it takes the hospital to get one patient out of the operating room and the next patient into the operating room. There are a lot of tasks that need to be completed to keep patients safe. The faster these tasks can be completed, the faster the next operation can begin. It is important for hospitals to keep an eye on all of the tasks that take place in between procedures. That way, they can find ways to shorten this time to get more operations out of a single room.
The Unpredictability of Certain Cases
Without a doubt, certain surgical procedures are unpredictable. Even though the hospital may think that a hernia repair is going to take an hour, this is not always the case. There are complications that could develop as the procedure begins. For example, when the surgeon opens up the patient, they may identify other issues that need to be addressed. Or, the patient could have a host of chronic medical conditions that have to be handled during the procedure. Sometimes, it is difficult to foresee these problems in advance. Therefore, certain surgical procedures could take longer than they were supposed to. The unpredictability of cases can be a significant problem when scheduling operating rooms.
Different Types of Operating Rooms for Different Issues
In addition, not every operating room can handle every type of surgical procedure. You may think that if a procedure is not able to go in a certain room because the other case is running over, we can simply move that case to the other room. This is not always the case. There are certain rooms that have been designed for specific issues. A room that is designed to handle an EMT case cannot always handle a neurosurgical procedure. There are space requirements, equipment issues, and a host of other problems that need to be addressed before a procedure can be moved to another room. Hospitals need to be aware of what rooms can handle what procedures.
Managing Work Hour Limits for Residents and Fellows
Finally, hospitals also need to think about managing work hour requirements. Even though attending physicians are usually in charge of their own schedules, there are strict limits regarding resident and fellow work hours. Residents and fellows play an important role in surgical procedures. Hospitals need to be aware of just how many hours these individuals are working. Even though they need to get their cases in, hospitals also need to think about the safety of the patient. If residents and fellows have worked too many hours, then they should go home and get some rest before they return to the hospital for another operation.
Develop a Comprehensive Solution for Operating Room Schedules
These are just a few of the many challenges that hospitals and operating room scheduling professionals face when it comes to surgical procedures. There are lots of people who require surgery every day. There are lots of surgeons who are willing to step up and help those individuals. On the other hand, there are a lot of challenges that need to be addressed as well. Fortunately, this is not something that medical systems have to face on their own. There are software programs that can make this process easier, helping hospitals get the most out of their operating rooms.