Showing surgeons ‘massive’ cost of disposable supplies leads to big savings for hospitals | National Post

In our disposable culture, it is unsurprising that the bleed of this trend into healthcare has gone largely unchecked.

Operating rooms now use scads of throwaway equipment, saving sterilizing time and shaving off some intra-operative minutes by using devices that are slightly more specialized for components of the procedure.

Surgeons, nurses, and patients are all unaware of the cost. In fact, "Surgical residents and staff have a generally poor knowledge of the cost of common consumable products used in the operating room," according to a recent study in Laryngoscope by Canadian otolaryngologists.

Tom Blackwell of the National Post highlighted the issue and discovered some of the simple changes that administrators and surgeons could make to save costs without significantly impacting operation times. These efforts would also reduce landfill waste, something not emphasized in the article, but a very important consideration for the long term sustainability of our health care system.

See the video and article: Showing surgeons ‘massive’ cost of disposable supplies leads to big savings for hospitals.



Source: http://news.nationalpost.com/news/canada/s...

How residency programs are training doctors to waste money - Vox

It makes sense that our practice patterns are very much influenced by where and with whom we train. Why should there be any exception when it comes to over-ordering tests and treatments?

A recent study in JAMA, Spending Patterns in Region of Residency Training and Subsequent Expenditures for Care Provided by Practicing Physicians for Medicare Beneficiaries, shows that where we train has implications for high-value care.

Residents who train in regions with high health care costs (that is, the places that err on the side of more scans and specialists) continue to practice expensive medicine decades beyond graduation — even if they move to low-cost parts of the country.
The JAMA paper suggests a tantalizingly easy way to save money in American health care: train more residents in low-cost areas of the country. They would learn, from the get-go, to be more frugal physicians. If there was a way for the health care system to cut 7 percent of all spending just by training doctors differently, after all, you'd think we'd jump at it.
But, like most things in health policy, this is easier said than done.

Read more on Vox.