Surgeries shorter in outpatient surgery centers

May 23, 2014
Surgeries shorter in outpatient surgery centers

(HealthDay)—Outpatient surgeries take less time when performed in ambulatory surgery centers (ASCs) compared to hospitals, according to research published in the May issue of Health Affairs.

Elizabeth L. Munnich, Ph.D., from the University of Louisville in Kentucky, and Stephen T. Parente, Ph.D., M.P.H., from the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, analyzed data on procedure length for surgeries performed in ambulatory surgery centers.

The researchers found that ASCs provide a lower-cost alternative to hospitals for outpatient surgeries. Compared to procedures performed in hospitals, procedures performed in ASCs, on average, take 31.8 fewer minutes—a 25 percent difference relative to the mean procedure time.

"Given the rapid growth in the number of surgeries performed in ASCs in recent years, our findings suggest that ASCs provide an efficient way to meet future growth in demand for outpatient surgeries and can help fulfill the Affordable Care Act's goals of reducing costs while improving the quality of ," the authors write.

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