that decision was re-evaluated, everyone realized they had to come up
with something else, says Whitney.
“If we would have made that choice, we would have limited ourselves
to only being able to do certain procedures in certain rooms, which is
what we didn’t want to do,” she says. “That takes away your ability to
add on cases and do what you’ve got to do.”
The hospital then closed down one OR suite at a time to remodel the
rooms and set up the necessary infrastructure. The project took about
a year. It involved installing TRUMPF booms in the ceilings of the OR
suites, reconfiguring other equipment around the rooms, removing items
from the walls, repainting, and more.
“The construction and installation went very smoothly,” says Whitney.
In order to ensure the surgical department could still function effectively, Whitney took great pains to monitor how OR time was being used
during the renovation project. She honored block time and took away
open time. If a surgeon wasn’t filling a block, Whitney contacted them
a week prior and informed him or her the space would be released if
no one was going to fill it. That way, she says, the hospital wasn’t losing
business while its OR suites were being redone.
Once the project was completed, the Memorial Pembroke surgical staff
immediately enjoyed the benefits of Olympus two-dimensional video systems. According to Whitney, they greatly appreciated the improved image
quality. They were able to utilize flexible tip scopes and all-in-one scopes,
allowing for both better and easier viewing capabilities.
“The surgeons loved it,” said Whitney. “It gave them the opportunity
to have new technology they hadn’t used before, even with a 2D system.”
Whitney says hospital facilities looking at OR integration technology
and considering a renovation project similar to the one that occurred
at Memorial Pembroke need to properly evaluate their needs, wants,
and goals before moving ahead. There will be a desire to purchase and
implement top-of-the-line equipment technology, but it’s vital for deci-
sion-makers to recognize the best investment is one that acquires tech-
nology that fits well within that particular hospital’s OR environment in
the immediate future and several years down the road.
The decision-makers also require the support and input of the hospitals surgeons and staff or they run the risk of botching the project before
it ever really begins.
“If they aren’t involved in the process, they are going to fight you,”
According to Stuczynski, the success of such projects hinges on the
ability for decision-makers to ask themselves tough questions and be
realistic about the corresponding answers. These questions include the
• How are my operating rooms running right now?
• Will the surgeons use the technology?
• What types of procedures is my hospital doing?
• What types of procedures do I want my hospital to do in the future?
Lastly, those tasked with making OR equipment purchases of any
kind need to remind themselves of one fact:
“If you add new technology, it doesn’t mean your operating room is
suddenly going to become efficient,” says Stuczynski. “It has to be an
enhancement to an already good process,” he adds.