The Yarmouth Hospital Foundation’s annual appeal is now in full swing. The focus this year is on the OR department of the hospital, specifically laparoscopic suites.
With advances in medicine, there has been a significant rise in laparoscopic surgery. Laparoscopic surgery, or minimally invasive surgery (MIS), is less invasive for patients, resulting in a shorter hospital stay, quicker recovery time and reduced risk of post surgical complications (such as infections). A large majority of abdominal surgery procedures can be completed with this technique.
Although most of the surgeries performed at Yarmouth Regional Hospital have been done by laparoscopy, the operating rooms weren’t well equipped or designed for it.
At the beginning of this year the Yarmouth Hospital Foundation pledged its support to raise $231,000 (25 per cent of the cost) for two new laparoscopic suites for the OR department.
The need for these new operating rooms was so urgent the suites were constructed and opened earlier this summer. Having these new surgical suites enhances the safety of all patient care, increases Operating Room efficiency, while at the same time serving as a recruitment feature for new medical staff, says Dr. Chris Murphy, Chief of OR.
As of the end of August, the Foundation had raised $180,000 towards its commitment for the project. The funds were raised through the annual gala, a spring appeal, the Jody Shelley Golf Fore Health, in memoriam donations, general donations and community events. With $51,000 of its pledge remaining, the Foundation has retained its focus on the laparoscopic suites for this year’s annual holiday appeal.
Since the Foundation was established in 1970 it has raised over $17 million in support of health care. Community support enables the Yarmouth Hospital Foundation to support and enhance our hospital as a community and regional center of excellence in health care.
What is a Laparoscopic Surgical Suite?
It is a surgical operating room which is designed and outfitted with dedicated laparoscopic surgical equipment. It includes specially designed booms and structures to safely contain the laparoscopic equipment for easy and safe access.
What is laparoscopic surgery (also called Minimally Invasive Surgery)?
Small incisions are made in the body through which the surgeon inserts surgical instruments and a scope. The scope transmits images to a television monitor and the surgeon performs the surgery inside the body while watching the monitor.
Surgeries performed via an abdominal incision that allows the surgeon visible access to the abdominal cavity are called open surgeries.
The majority of all surgeries performed at Yarmouth Regional Hospital are through laparoscopy.
Why are laparoscopic surgeries better than open surgeries?
Laparoscopic surgery is less invasive so patients recover faster and many post-surgical complications are eliminated.
Open surgeries have a high rate of complications such as incisional hernias, which often requires another surgery to repair; laparoscopic surgery doesn’t require a large incision through muscle and other tissue, so the occurrence of complications is greatly diminished and recovery time is minimized.
How are laparoscopic surgeries done now without a laparoscopic surgical suite?
Equipment is loaded on carts and wheeled into the operating room where the surgery will take place. Significant floor space is taken up with carts and equipment and electrical lines and wires lay on the floor creating a potential safety issue. (See figure 1)
Room set-up takes more time and also presents hazards for surgeons and nursing staff.
Why should we invest in a laparoscopic surgical suite?
Laparoscopic techniques means better patient outcomes such as enhanced patient safety, less pain, shorter recovery periods and reduced system-wide costs with shorter hospital stays.
A laparoscopic suite supports optimal workflow to support new surgical techniques, maintain a sterile environment and provide flexibility to accommodate new technology over longer periods of time.
A laparoscopic suite is also expected to aid physician recruitment and retention. An up-to-date facility that supports their desire to offer new techniques is always of benefit.
Will a laparoscopic surgical suite free up operating room time?
The increased efficiency of the suite provides decreased pre-anesthesia and nursing set-up and change-over time because all equipment is already in place.
Start time and change-over time indicators are an important measure of surgical efficiencies within hospitals and can be used to help improve performance. In order to maximize the use of valuable operating room time, having the equipment already in place at the start of the day and during change-over time ensures the first case of the day starts on time, minimizing delays and cancellations while increasing the number of cases that can be done daily.
How much does a laparoscopic suite cost?
Two operating rooms will be converted into suites at a cost of approximately $991,333. (YRH currently has three general anesthetic rooms and two local anesthetic rooms.)
The Department of Health and Wellness has contributed $743,500 and requests that the Yarmouth Hospital Foundation fundraise the remaining 25% or $247,833.