Home >  News >  March, 2014

New Pediatric Surgery Standards

Facilities will be categorized based on advanced resources and certified caregivers.

Published: March 4, 2014

The American College of Surgeons has issued new standards aimed at ensuring surgical facilities achieve optimal outcomes in young patients by meeting the medical, emotional and social needs of children and infants.

The standards categorize facilities by level of resources, similar to the classification of trauma centers:

  • Level I facilities are at the highest level of preparedness. They're equipped to perform complex and non-complex procedures on children of all ages, are staffed around the clock with credentialed pediatric surgeons, anesthesiologists, radiologist and ER docs, and have Level IV NICUs.
  • Level II facilities are capable of providing advanced care for children of all ages, including those with comorbid conditions, typically in a single surgical specialty. A certified pediatric surgeon, anesthesiologist and radiologist must be on staff, with other pediatric specialists available for consultation. Facilities must have a Level III or higher NICU and be able to stabilize and transfer critically ill children to a hospital with higher-level resources.
  • Level III facilities have the resources to perform common, low-risk procedures in otherwise healthy children older than 1 year. A general surgeon, anesthesiologist and emergency physician with pediatric experience must be on staff. These facilities must have a Level I or higher NICU and be able to stabilize and transfer critically ill children to a hospital with higher-level resources.

Additionally, all facilities hosting pediatric patients must have at least 1 pediatric surgical nurse on staff, must develop a pediatric rapid response team that's available at all hours and have an in-house physician certified in Pediatric Advanced Life Support. They must also be equipped for the resuscitation of pediatric patients in all clinical care areas.

Ambulatory surgery centers are held to additional standards: They must have pre- and post-op areas dedicated to the care of pediatric patients, and employ a pediatric anesthesiologist to administer and supervise general anesthetics or sedatives to all patients younger than 1 year.

The standards were developed in conjunction with the American Pediatric Surgical Association, the Society of Pediatric Anesthesia and the Task Force for Children's Surgical Care.

Daniel Cook


Also in the News...

Do Drug-Free Interventions Reduce Pain or Opioid Consumption After Total Knee Arthroplasty?
Administration Signals Likely End to Medicare Bundled Payments Initiative
New Program Aims to Optimize Colorectal Surgery
Hospital Accused of Elaborate Cover-Up After Unnecessary Surgery
Robotic Device Shows Promise as Soft, Smart Endoscope Tool
Penis Enhancement Surgery Turns Fatal
Sterility Concerns Prompt Shutdown of Utah-Based Compounding Pharmacy

New to Outpatient Surgery Magazine?
Sign-up to continue reading this article.
Register Now
Have an account? Please log in:
Email Address:
  Remember my login on this computer

advertiser banner

Other Articles That May Interest You

Penis Enhancement Surgery Turns Fatal

Researchers believe the patient died from a pulmonary fat embolism during what's generally considered to be a simple and safe procedure.

Unflattering Press for Bronx-Lebanon Hospital's Head of Orthopedic Surgery

The report detailed surgeon Ira Kirschenbaum's record of alleged poor outcomes for his patients, including multiple patient deaths and a string of malpractice suits pending against him.

Patient Claims Surgeon Wrongly Shared Her Before-and-After Plastic Surgery Pictures

A local news station placed black bars over the patient's breasts and pelvic area — but identified the woman by name when it aired her photos.