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Title: Improvements in health care for patients undergoing thyroidectomy
Authors: Ramanujam, L.N.
Cheah, W.-K. 
Keywords: Clinical pathway
Cost of care
Length of stay
Issue Date: Oct-2005
Citation: Ramanujam, L.N., Cheah, W.-K. (2005-10). Improvements in health care for patients undergoing thyroidectomy. Asian Journal of Surgery 28 (4) : 266-270. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: Objective: In this study, we evaluated the effect on cost and clinical outcome of the implementation of departmental subspecialization and a clinical care pathway for patients undergoing thyroidectomy. Methods: Subspecialization and a clinical thyroidectomy pathway were implemented in 2001 at the Department of Surgery, National University Hospital, Singapore. A total of 150 patients (Group A) who served as controls were compared with 143 patients who were managed after implementation of subspecialization and the clinical thyroidectomy pathway (Group B). Length of stay, postoperative complications and cost per patient were compared between the two groups. Results: The mean age was 46 years and females comprised 77% of all patients. The mean length of hospital staywas shorter in Group B (1.9 days) compared with Group A (3.3 days; p < 0.001). The mean hospital charges also fell significantly after implementation, at S$3,524 per patient in Group B compared with S$3,929 in Group A (p = 0.003). There was no difference in morbidity between the two groups (2.0% and 1.4% in Groups A and B, respectively). Conclusion: This study confirms that length of hospital stay and hospital costs are effectively reduced through the combination of subspecialization and a clinical pathway for patients undergoing thyroidectomy. Subspecialty units and pathways reduce variation in patient care. This effectively leads to better-quality outcomes, more efficient discharge planning and improved cost-effectiveness of clinical services. © 2005 Elsevier. All rights reserved.
Source Title: Asian Journal of Surgery
ISSN: 10159584
Appears in Collections:Staff Publications

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