Providing safe, efficient care and lowering costs is important to every anesthesia department. Dr. Steven Sheinman, Chairman of Anesthesia and Medical Director at North Miami Beach Surgical Center, said in an interview that anesthesia groups must work closely with the facility pharmacist to avoid unnecessary expensive medications.
The recent drug shortages have been a big challenge because there are times when we must order more expensive drugs when the less expensive alternatives are not available. ASCs should recently review formulary and removed drugs which were rarely used and replace other expensive brand name preparations with less expensive generic equivalents. Replacing one product alone may result in annual cost savings of over $8,000/year. Still, strict guidelines must be developed for the use of the recently approved, but relatively expensive, intravenous drugs like ibuprofen and acetaminophen.
Using the least amount of narcotics possible to ensure the patient is comfortable but without untoward side effects is also ideal. A multimodal anesthetic technique is one such way to decrease cost and enhance patient satisfaction. As a result, patients should experience less post-operative nausea and vomiting.
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