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Leading doctors highlight nine centres of surgical excellence

An independent study published today highlights UK hospitals which have achieved significant results using evidence-based practice to improve surgery.

The study, published by the Improving Surgical Outcomes Group (ISOG), is a follow up to their 2005 report Modernising care for patient undergoing major surgery. It looks at how nine hospitals have implemented best practice to show significant improvements in patient recovery times, as well as significant cost savings.
The hospitals highlighted are:
Medway Maritime Hospital, Gillingham,  Kent. The Freeman Hospital, Newcastle. Worthing Hospital, West Sussex. Royal Alexander Hospital, Paisley. University College Hospital, London
Torbay Hospital, Devon. York Hospital St Thomas’ Hospital, London, and Royal Alexander Hospital, Paisley.

The report highlights three areas for improved outcomes: objective pre-assessment of patient fitness, intra-operative fluid intervention and appropriate levels of critical care for high-risk patients. ISOG found that improved fluid administration both during and after surgery dramatically reduced post-operative complications and mortality whilst also reducing the average length of stay by a fifth.

Use of oesophageal doppler monitoring (ODM) in the Medway Maritime Hospital, the Freeman Hospital, Worthing Hospital and the Royal Alexandra Hospital all enabled patients to leave hospital sooner. The Medway Maritime Hospital was able to open a new 10 bed HDU ward with the £1.1m they saved by using the technology. In the Freeman and Worthing Hospitals, none of the 118 patients fluid optimised during major bowel surgery died, whereas the average mortality rate for this type of surgery in England and Wales is 6%.

ISOG’s new study clearly shows the benefits for patient outcomes and hospital finances. According to Dr Howard Wakeling, Consultant Anaesthetist at Worthing Hospital: “The costs of introducing this very safe and easy to use equipment are minimal.  The benefits for patients and the NHS are considerable.”