The comparative outcomes study by physicians at H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute and the University of South Florida College of Medicine is reported in the September issue of the journal Archives of Surgery. It has attracted widespread attention from states across the country as they move toward more stringent regulation of office-based surgery, which until recently had little regulation or oversight.
Today more surgeries are performed as outpatient procedures than in the hospital, and the proportion of operations in physician offices continues to rise. Many cancer screening procedures, such as endoscopies and biopsies, and cosmetic procedures, such as liposuction and tummy tucks, are performed in physician offices.
Ambulatory surgery centers, licensed outpatient clinics where patients can go home on the same day as surgery, are highly regulated by governmental agencies.
Against this backdrop, the researchers posed the question: Are there differences in patient safety standards at ambulatory surgery centers and physician offices in Florida?
"The answer was an overwhelming yes. The incidence of death and injury was 10 times higher for a surgical procedures performed in an office setting," said lead researcher Hector Vila Jr., an assistant professor of anesthesiology and interdisciplinary oncology at USF and chief of anesthesiology at H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute.
"The bottom line is that patients are entitled to the same high standard of care whether they're having their surgery in a hospital, an ambulatory surgery center or a physician's office. Even a minor procedure can quickly turn into a major problem for someone with an unde
Contact: Anne DeLotto Baier
University of South Florida Health