NHS operating theatres are failing to deliver as many surgical procedures as they could due to wasted time and organisational failings.
This is according to a report from NHS Improvement, highlighted by BBC News, which shows that 280,000 more non-emergency operations could be carried out each year by organising operating theatre schedules better.
“NHS hospitals could carry out 280,000 more non-emergency operations a year through better organisation, according to a new report.“
Examining data from 2016, it was indicated that more than two hours are wasted each day on the average operating list due to avoidable factors like late starts. By eliminating these, more surgeries could be fitted in without creating an increase in overall workload.
As such, the report called for lists to be planned more effectively, with efforts also made to reduce late starts and early finishes. Minimising last-minute cancellations through better pre-op planning can also help hospitals to improve their performance.
NHS Improvement's Steve Russell said: "We hope this analysis will enable [hospitals] to identify bottlenecks within their systems to ensure operations are scheduled more appropriately and more patients receive the care they need quickly."
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