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Title: Effect of the acute general surgical unit: a regional perspective.
Austin Authors: Pritchard, Natasha;Newbold, Ryan;Robinson, Kerian;Ooi, Wei Ming 
Affiliation: Surgical Unit, Bendigo Health, Bendigo, Victoria, Australia
Surgical Unit, St Vincent's Hospital, Fitzroy, Victoria, Australia
General Surgery Unit, Austin Health, Heidelberg, Victoria, Australia
Issue Date: Jul-2017 2015-12-17
Publication information: ANZ Journal of Surgery 2017; 87(7-8): 595-599
Abstract: Acute surgical units have gained favour in Australia and New Zealand. However, there is a lack of evidence regarding their effectiveness in regional centres. We aim to investigate the effect of the introduction of the Acute General Surgical Unit (AGSU) on the outcomes for patients undergoing emergency appendicectomies or cholecystectomies in a regional hospital. AGSU was introduced in March 2012. We conducted a retrospective comparison analysis of patients admitted 2 years prior to and 2 years after the introduction of AGSU. Primary outcomes included length of stay, time to theatre, after hours and overnight operating. Secondary outcomes included negative appendicectomy rate, conversion to open cholecystectomy and bile duct injuries. No difference was seen between pre and post-AGSU introduction in median time to theatre in the appendicectomy group (8.00 h versus 9.24 h) or cholecystectomy group (17.63 h versus 17.75 h). Additionally, there was no difference between median length of stay in the appendicectomy group (47.52 h versus 48.00 h) or the cholecystectomy group (71.50 h versus 70.67 h). Night operating was significantly reduced in the positive appendicectomy group (4.4% versus 9.1%, P = 0.027) and the overall cholecystectomy group (0.43% versus 3.4%, P = 0.035), however overall after hours operating remained equivalent. The introduction of the AGSU unit led to a significant reduction in overnight operating, which may improve patient outcomes and surgeon satisfaction. Length of stay and time to theatre did not change. Future directions include further research into the impact of theatre access on emergency surgery outcomes.
DOI: 10.1111/ans.13403
PubMed URL: 26678529
Type: Journal Article
Subjects: acute
Appears in Collections:Journal articles

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