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How to Prevent Surgical “No-Shows”

When patients don’t show up for their scheduled surgery, many costs are incurred that cannot be recouped, including the OR staff, the anesthesiology team, and equipment and medication that have been ordered. Reducing potential “no-shows” is imperative to maximize efficiencies. In addition to “no-shows,” reasons for cancelled surgeries to include scheduling errors, equipment problems, cancellations due to patient medical status, and emergency surgeries bumping medical procedures.
Key predictors of no-shows include prior missed appointments, history of alcoholism or other substance abuse and/or psychiatric issues. Measures can be taken to deter no-shows among patients from low-income background, such as scheduling appointments around public transportation times, educating patients on the benefits of the surgery, and eliminating the fear of uncomfortable procedures that seems to be higher in low-income patients.

The “Dirty Dozen” of Health IT

Marion K. Jenkins, an executive vice president at 3t Systems, an IT services company, cites 12 IT threats that healthcare providers should be aware of. By ignoring these threats he warns medical facilities could experience operational risk or breach of HIPAA regulations, which could result in fines of up to $1.5 million.

Jenkins’ list of red flags includes:

  • Unsupported unpatched operating systems
  • Antivirus/antimalware issues
  • Poor security authentication
  • Unsecured wireless networks
  • No data redundancy, backups
  • Portable media and laptop security
  • Poor user training
  • Out-of-date, out-of-warranty systems
  • Lack of employee computer use policies
  • Email scams, hoaxes, phishing
  • Inept/untrained IT support resources
  • Data on workstations, laptops

BoneStress app available

BoneStress app imageBoneStress is a new free app that allows orthopaedic surgeons to look at the effects of action and joint loading for different hip stem designs.  One of many factors considered when determining a hip implant is the angle of the neck of the femur. This app shows an interactive model for different hip stem designs and how they affect radial load in the bone. The app is designed specifically for orthopaedic surgeons who have a desire to better understand hip biomechanics and stem length implications, but it cannot be used for operative planning for individual patients. Read more here