Five Hospitals Share Three Secrets to Improve Knee Surgery Outcomes

Cheryl Clark, May 25, 2012

When surgeons at five healthcare systems shared their individual processes for 11,000 knee replacement operations, three best practices emerged that reduced lengths of stay, lowered readmission rates, and improved other outcomes for hospitals that embraced them.

That's the finding from the High Value Healthcare Collaborative, composed of orthopedic surgical teams from Cleveland Clinic, Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, Denver Health, Intermountain Healthcare, and the Mayo Clinic.

"These are five very different organizations—all of whom by any gold standard have good results for complications, readmissions and other outcomes,"explains Ivan Tomek, MD, orthopedic surgeon at Dartmouth-Hitchcock. "But the fact is there was still significant variation, even though we're all doing the same knee operation."

Tomek and colleagues published their findings in a paper published in this month's Health Affairs journal.

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