In the September-October print issue of Surgical Products, our cover story focused on technology and patient care solutions driving hybrid OR integration. In the article, we quoted several experts, including Christy Guadet, Director of OR1 Marketing, KARL STORZ Endoscopy-America, Inc. This week, SP will run standalone Q&As from interviews related to our cover story. Here are Gaudet’s responses:
Surgical Products: What do you feel are the greatest advantages of investing in hybrid OR capabilities and equipment? Why?
Gaudet: A Hybrid OR encompasses the definition of “hybrid” on many different levels. Not only is it a convergence of “hybrid” procedures and multi-disciplinary approaches, but it is an intersection of “hybrid” information. Components are combined to provide a range of functions and capabilities: management of OR technologies, as well as diagnostic and endoscopic imaging, navigation capabilities, network access and EHR information including data aggregation that supports information-driven care, and connectivity for telemedicine. The breadth of the technology installed is one of the greatest advantages of this type of investment, providing versatility of technology that helps future-proof the room for additional specialty applications still to come.
SP: Which procedures or areas of patient care do you feel the surgical community should focus on when looking at the hybrid OR? Why?
Gaudet: Hybrid rooms can be defined as various different room types: Hybrid Cath, Endovascular, Interventional, iMRI, iCT and others. Development of hybrid ORs was driven by initial successes in certain cardiovascular applications. Today, they are proving to be equally valuable for use in Neurosurgery, Trauma, and Orthopedics.
SP: Is used/refurbished equipment an option, in your opinion?
Gaudet: Because of the complex infrastructure of hybrid rooms, it is not generally recommended to use refurbished equipment for the foundational infrastructure. Certain individual devices and components layered into the room, however, may be considered clinically acceptable if refurbished. For example, the room’s cabling and routing Integration System should be newly purchased, but miscellaneous devices, such as monitors, computers, CCUs, etc., could be purchased refurbished.
SP: If cost and logistics were not an issue, what should be the first piece of equipment or technology embedded into every OR?
Gaudet: At the core of every Hybrid Room is an Integration System that serves as the cockpit for control of all signals in the room. Considerations for what’s built on top of that infrastructure are determined by the intended specialty. Ceiling vs. floor mounted components and single vs. biplane are common decisions. On top of these “must haves,” 4K displays, telemedicine connectivity, and network-based content management solutions are emerging trends anticipated for the future.
SP: What do you feel is the biggest patient trend driving hybrid OR investments?
Gaudet: Shorter recovery times resulting from minimally invasive procedures help drive patient appeal. Additionally, real-time or near-real-time imaging capabilities allow adjustments in the clinical team’s activities and procedures to be made as needed during the course of treatment, and help support consolidation of the continuum of care.
SP: Looking forward, what factor, whether it’s financial, patient-centric or other, do you feel will play the biggest role in shaping hybrid OR development and implementation?
Gaudet: Healthcare, and especially the OR, is focused on improving efficiency and productivity while reducing complications. The added advantages of in-room imaging facilitate all of these goals in the OR while attaining higher levels of patient satisfaction through positive outcomes.