Last updated on April 19, 2014 at 13:20 EDT

Strong for Surgery Launches Awareness Campaign to Advance Pre-Surgical Healthcare Quality Improvement

May 17, 2012

SEATTLE, May 17, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Washington State’s surgical community announces today the kickoff of the Strong for Surgery initiative. Strong for Surgery’s goal is to educate the healthcare community on effective steps that can be taken to better prepare patients for surgery and provide the best outcomes possible. The initiative is led by the University of Washington’s CERTAIN program and is working in partnership with the Surgical Care and Outcomes Assessment Program (SCOAP).

Researchers estimate that one in four surgical patients is malnourished. These patients have significantly increased complications, a longer length of hospital stay and higher healthcare costs. Preoperative nutritional intervention has been convincingly shown to improve clinical outcomes.

The first phase of the Strong for Surgery campaign will address the nutritional status of all patients prior to surgery with a number of steps, including:

  • Implementation of nutrition screening
  • Use of appropriate, evidence-based nutritional support
  • Use of lab tests to measure serum albumin, an important indicator of morbidity and mortality to improve risk conversations between patients and their doctors

“SCOAP hospitals participating in CERTAIN initiatives are now shining a spotlight on care in doctors’ offices before a patient reaches the operating room,” said Dr. Tom Varghese, surgeon at the University of Washington and CERTAIN director of the Strong for Surgery initiative. “By benchmarking performance and implementing quality initiatives such as a standardized pre-surgical checklist, Strong for Surgery and its partners aim to improve surgical outcomes and continue to save Washington State millions more in healthcare dollars.”

The culmination of the Strong for Surgery campaign will be a pre-surgical checklist used in hospitals and clinics statewide, similar to checklists used effectively in every operating room across the state. Checklists are used by the medical community, aviation community and other industries to increase safety and standardization.

For more information on Strong for Surgery go to www.strongforsurgery.org.

The Surgical Care and Outcomes Assessment Program (SCOAP) is a program of the non-profit Foundation for Health Care Quality. CERTAIN is a program of the University of Washington, and the academic research and development partner of SCOAP.

For more information visit www.scoap.org and www.becertain.org.

SOURCE University of Washington-SORCE

Source: PR Newswire