Reducing Operation Cancellations Will Help Protect NHS Budget

According to a recent article in The Scotsman, more than four operations a day were cancelled in the Lothians last year at the request of either the patient or NHS Lothian.

The figures, which were released through the Scottish Parliament, showed that 1606 operations did not go ahead. Although some cancellations may have been due to understandable reasons such as staff illness, it is likely that in other instances the cancellations could have been avoided.

Lothians Conservative MSP Gavin Brown said: “It is important that a full breakdown of the reasons behind these cancellations is made available. We must do everything we can to protect the NHS budget, and reducing the number of operation cancellations will play a significant role in this.”

Ardentia’s Theatres reporting module helps managers and clinicians better manage operating theatre utilisation, allowing them to identify specific areas for improving efficiency and increase theatre productivity.

The solution is built on Ardentia’s proven HealthWare performance management solution, and enables staff to access the high quality data needed to support robust financial planning and management.

Find out more about Ardentia’s Theatres reporting module here.

Deploying PLC at Southampton

E-Health Insider has published the case study about Southampton University Hospitals Trust’s deployment of Ardentia’s Patient Level Costing (PLC) solution.

Based on an interview with the Trust’s finance manager Fiona Boyle, the case study shows how the Trust has moved from static service line reports to in-depth patient-level costing using an Ardentia solution.

The Trust’s 7,500 staff treat more than 115,000 inpatients and day patients every year, including 40,000 emergency admissions. They see 350,000 people at outpatient appointments, and deal with around 85,000 cases in the emergency department.  Providing these services costs more than £800,000 every day, and therefore robust financial management is essential to the effective running of the Trust.

With PLC deployed, the Trust’s clinicians and finance staff can drill down further to analyse data and get the specific information needed to help drive change, deliver improvements and generate savings.

Ardentia’s solution has also enabled staff to compare reference costs with actual costs of treatment at a patient level, helping them meet the requirements of NHS Monitor.

Click here to read the full case study on EHI.

Will a Cut in Doctors’ Salaries Improve the Public Health?

One of Scotland’s top public sector earners today calls on all doctors – including herself – to take a pay cut and help create a fairer society, claiming society would benefit if the medical profession was paid less.

Dr Linda de Caestecker, a director for Greater Glasgow and Clyde told The Herald that doctors should consider a reduction in salary and stop demanding significant pay increases every year.  The move comes as Finance Secretary John Swinney considers calls for a 5% across-the-board pay cut for senior public-sector staff to address the squeeze on Government finances.

Dr de Caestecker believes that pay inequality needs to change to address some of Scotland’s entrenched health problems.  There is evidence that in more equal societies everyone fared better, and that doctors should take some leadership on this issue.

The suggestion may not prove to be a popular one, but does have its merit.  At a time when record financial savings need to be found across the public sector, it could be a case of “every little helps”.  Healthcare providers are faced with the challenge of doing more with less, of making resources go ever further, and providing care that is both effective and cost-effective.

Robust financial management is central to achieving this.  Trusts need to have a clear and accurate understanding of where costs are incurred, if they are to be able to improve and enhance service delivery.  Solutions such as Ardentia’s patient level costing give trusts this granularity of detail, giving them the ability to optimise financial management and clinical performance.