Consecutive Surgeon and Anesthesia Team Improve Turnover Time in the Operating Room

J Med Syst. 2022 Jan 28;46(3):16. doi: 10.1007/s10916-022-01802-6.


Efficient management of the operating room (OR) contributes to much of today's healthcare expenditure and plays a critical role in generating revenue for most healthcare systems. Scheduling of OR cases with the same team and surgeon have been reported to improve turnover time between cases which in turn, improves efficiency and resource utilization. We aim to assess different operating room procedures within multiple subspecialties and explore the factors that positively and negatively influence turnover time (TOT) in the operating room. We conducted a retrospective review of cases that were completed on weekdays between 0600 and 2359 from July 2017 through March 2018. Cases between 0000 and 0559 were excluded from this study. Of the total 2,714 cases included in our study, transplant surgery had the highest mean TOT (71 ± 48 min) with orthopedic surgery cases without robots having the lowest mean TOT. OR cases in rooms with the same specialty had significantly less mean TOT compared to rooms switching between different subspecialties (70 vs. 117 min; p < 0.0001). Similarly, cases with the same surgeon and anesthesia team had a significant lower TOT (p < 0.0001). Consecutive specialty, surgeon, anesthesiologist, and prior procedure ending before 15:00 were all independent predictors of lower TOT (p < 0.0001). Our study shows scheduling cases with the same OR team for elective cases can decrease TOT and potentially increase operating room efficiency during the day. Further studies may be needed to assess the long-term effects of such variables affecting OR TOT on healthcare expenditure.

Keywords: Anesthesiologist; Operating room; Surgeon; Turnover.

MeSH terms

  • Anesthesia*
  • Efficiency, Organizational
  • Humans
  • Operating Rooms
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Surgeons*
  • Time Factors