Research Article| Volume 215, ISSUE 1, P19-22, January 2018

Picking apart surgical pick lists – Reducing variation to decrease surgical costs



      Average costs associated with common procedures can vary by surgeon without a corresponding variation in outcome or case complexity.


      De-identified cost and equipment utilization data were collected from our hospital for elective laparoscopic cholecystectomy performed by 17 different surgeons over a 6-month period. A group of surgeons used this data to design a standardized equipment pick list that became optional (not mandated) for laparoscopic cholecystectomy. Cost and consumable surgical supply utilization data were collected for six months prior to and following the creation of the standardized pick-list.


      280 elective laparoscopic cholecystectomies were performed during the study interval. In the 6 months after standardized pick list creation, the cost of disposable supplies utilized per case decreased by 32%.


      Surgical cost savings can be achieved with standardized procedure pick lists and attention to the cost of consumable surgical supplies.


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