Utilization of resource leveling to optimize ERCP efficiency
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- Hendrick, L.M., Harewood, G.C., Patchett, S.E. et al. Ir J Med Sci (2011) 180: 143. doi:10.1007/s11845-010-0570-7
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Optimizing endoscopy efficiency is becoming increasingly important. This study profiled ERCP availability and assessed resource leveling as a strategy to enhance efficiency.
All ERCPs performed at an academic teaching hospital between January 2007 and December 2008 were reviewed. Procedure timeliness (time between admission and ERCP) and demand were analyzed to assess resource utilization.
Data were recorded for 393 ERCPs. Profiling identified an unequal distribution of waiting times from admission to procedure due to restricted ERCP availability. Use of resource leveling methodology demonstrated that a small increase in procedure availability (one additional half day per week) would significantly reduce the hospital stay of ERCP patients.
Resource leveling can be applied to balance procedure provision with demand to cope with fluctuations in demand. The impact of resource leveling can be truly measured only by implementing these changes and prospectively studying the effect.