Archive Anesthesia 2017

What Makes Us Anesthesia Providers Tick

Head-of-the table insights for getting the most out of your providers.

Thomas Durick, MD

BIO

Dr. Durick EXPERT OPINION Dr. Durick, who understands what it takes to run a successful facility, practices what he preaches at Fremont (Calif.) Surgery Center.

I'm a practicing anesthesiologist and former medical director of a bustling surgery center, so I know what makes anesthesia providers tick and what it takes to tap into their full potential as clinicians and team players. Here's what you can do to help ensure your providers deliver cost-effective, efficient and safe patient care, while also contributing to your facility's overall success.

1Value their contributions
Have you given your anesthesia providers everything they need, within reason, to do their jobs safely and quickly? If you've held off from buying the video laryngoscopes they've requested, you could have unintentionally created animosity amongst the team, giving the impression that their jobs aren't valued enough to purchase a tool proven to help us deliver safe care. It's also a misconception that providers don't generate revenue for your facility. Take regional blocks, for example. Depending on the payer, you can bill for the technical part of the block and collect facility fees.

2Eliminate downtime
Providers don't get paid unless they've got a needle in a patient or they're in the OR delivering anesthesia. They want to run efficient cases, maximize their time in your facility, bill for as many cases as possible and head home at a reasonable hour. The best way to incentivize providers to move cases along at a safe and efficient pace is to show them that you're actively trying to run an efficient center and will do everything in your power to minimize their downtime. Sharing specific examples will get them onboard with your efforts. If you move up a cataract case from 3:30 p.m. to 1:30 to fill a gap in the schedule, let your providers know so they're aware of your attempt to streamline the day.

The biggest piece of the efficiency puzzle is setting a realistic and accurate surgical schedule. That job is made easier with software that lets you conduct real-time case tracking. The software used at my last facility continually updated the average time it took for specific surgeons to perform specific procedures. When a surgeon booked a routine knee scope, for example, we knew to the minute how long it would likely take him to complete it. That powerful information let us block out efficient surgical schedules based on accurate case times, and kept our surgical team and anesthesia providers busy throughout the day.

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