His new policy requires surgeons to be present for the “substantial majority” of the surgery, which includes everything except minor activities at the beginning and end of a case, such as closing the incision, according to the report. Staff will also record every time a surgeon enters or exits the OR.
The policy was not adopted because concurrent surgeries were unsafe, nor is the practice uncommon at teaching hospitals, Dr. Hudson told The Seattle Times. However, the new policies aim to address patient concerns and expectations that a surgeon would be present for the majority of a case, according to the report.
The policy could limit patient access to surgeons, he said, so the health system plans to evaluate the need for more ORs and surgeons going forward, according to the report.
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