A PATIENT CENTRED PATHWAY DECREASES LENGTH OF STAY AND IMPROVES PATIENT SATISFACTION AFTER TOTAL HIP REPLACEMENT
Journal: Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery, British Volume
Introduction: This study evaluates the effect on hospital length of stay (LOS) of patients receiving a total hip replacement (THR) as part of a patient centred approach. In order to meet the “18 week” target a pathway was developed by combining the latest research evidence with guidance from the NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement.Methods: We prospectively studied the first 134 THR patients who followed the new pathway. The pathway included an enhanced pre-assessment process. Admission dates were mutually agreed and a predicted discharge date of 4 days was provided. All patients attended a pre-operative education session. Patients were admitted on the day of surgery with staggered admission times and followed an intensive physiotherapy program. The surgeons, surgical techniques, and discharge criteria all remained unchanged.Results: 100% of patients were admitted on the day of surgery and the average time between admission and start of surgery was 2hrs 41mins. All patients walked to theatre and 100% of patients received their first physiotherapy intervention within 18 hours post-operatively. The average length of stay was 3.85 days. 87% of patients went home on or before their predicted day of discharge. The patient feedback was excellent and satisfaction rates were very high. There were no alterations in surgical complication rates compared to before the pathway was introduced.Discussion: This decrease in LOS was dramatic and highly clinically significant. The average LOS for THR patients prior to commencing this new pathway was 7.5 days. High patient satisfaction rates indicate that by adopting a patient centred approach, significant decreases to LOS can be achieved alongside improving the quality of care. Pressure to meet the “18 week” target provided an opportunity to improve working practice as well as increasing surgical capacity.
Preferred by: Tom Wainwright