The Minister for Health, Dr James Reilly TD, has today officially launched the Model of Care for Acute Surgery and the National Policy and Procedure for Safe Surgery at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI).
The Model of Care for Acute Surgery has been developed given that up to 60% of the work undertaken in many surgical departments is on patients requiring acute surgical care. These patients are frequently the sickest, are elderly and have co-morbidities with often result in poorer outcomes.
The Model of Care for Acute Surgery thus sets out the principles and strategies necessary to ensure the provision of high-quality acute care for surgical patients in Ireland. Adherence to these principles, strategies and underlying critical considerations will ensure that patients experience:
- Safe, quality care in a suitable environment.
- Appropriate and timely attention from a senior doctors working within a dedicated multidisciplinary team.
- Prompt diagnosis, appropriate treatment and, where necessary, timely surgery, with appropriate aftercare, planned discharge with monitored outcomes.
- Excellent communication and respect for their autonomy and privacy.
- An optimum outcome with good after care, support and follow up.
Speaking at the launch, Professor Patrick J. Broe, President of RCSI said that ‘emergency surgery has to date been the poor relation of elective surgery and unfortunately, internationally, outcomes continue to be a cause of concern. The launch of the Model of Care for Acute Surgery today is testament to the determination of RCSI and HSE to improve the safety and quality of care for surgical patients presenting in the emergency or acute setting’.
Also speaking at the launch, Mr Tony O’Brien, CEO / Director General Designate of the Health Service Executive (HSE), said that ‘The adoption of global best practice principles in surgical care, patient safety, change management and business process re-engineering will be the keys to success as we work together to deliver the much needed change and reform that our health service requires’. He continued by saying that he ‘hopes the principles contained in the document will guide all hospitals and groups of hospitals in their efforts to provide the best care possible for their patients’.
The President of the College of Anaesthetists of Ireland (CAI), Dr Ellen O’Sullivan, who also spoke during the event congratulated the National Clinical Programme in Surgery for their achievements and highlighted the need for continued team working and broad stakeholder engagement.
In his closing remarks, Mr Ken Mealy, Joint Lead of the National Clinical Programme in Surgery thanked all those who contributed to the document during the consultation process and encouraged all staff who are involved in the delivery of surgical services to familiarise themselves with the principles contained in both Models of Care.
The National Clinical Programme in Surgery (NCPS) is a joint initiative between the HSE Clinical Strategy and Programmes Directorate, and Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland. The National Clinical Programme in Surgery commenced in 2010 with an initial focus on the delivery of a Model of Care for Elective Surgery. The programmes mission is to ‘enable access to high quality surgical care through optimum resources utilisation (value)’
The Model of Care for Elective Surgery, published by the National Clinical Programme in Surgery (NCPS) in 2011, advocated for appropriately used Pre-admission Assessment Clinics, Day Surgery, Day of Surgery Admissions and Discharge Planning, which has already had a significant positive impact on the efficient delivery of surgical care to patients in Ireland.