Outpatient Surgery Magazine

Heavy Duty - October 2016 - Subscribe to Outpatient Surgery Magazine

Outpatient Surgery Magazine, providing current information on Surgical Services, Surgical Facility Administration, Outpatient Surgery News and Trends, OR Excellence and more.

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Page 48 of 126

O C T O B E R 2 0 1 6 • O U T PA T I E N TS U R G E R Y. N E T • 4 9 "Five years ago our cutoff was 35," says the clinical manager of a Pennsylvania endoscopy center, "but we found with the ever-increas- ing BMI numbers that we were canceling a lot of cases. So we reeval- uated our policy and increased our limit to 45." "We used to have a weight limit," says an ASC administrator from Ohio. "But we constant- ly ran into patients that exceeded those numbers." They, too, have raised their limit, she says. How common is the issue? Aside from readily available and some- what alarming statistics — the most recent CDC estimates suggest that nearly 2 of every 5 adults are obese and that teenage obesity is also on the rise — our respondents say they've seen it with their own eyes. A whopping 93% say the weight of their patients seems to have increased in recent years. Fifty-eight percent say it's increased "by quite a bit." "It's a trend we're seeing across the board," says Lisa Waters, RN, BSN, director of perioperative services at the Vivere Dallas (Texas) Surgery Center. "Patients are much heavier, much larger. Especially in O utpatient facilities everywhere are caught in a bind. As patients get larger, their potential client bases get smaller. At least, that is, if facilities adhere to the traditional dic- tate that treating morbidly obese patients in an outpatient setting is likely to be too risky. What's a surgical facility to do? Many have chosen what they see as the only viable option. If they'd set limits in the past — based either on BMI or on weight — they've adjusted those limits upward. In a recent Outpatient Surgery survey, 47% of respondents said they'd raised — or been forced to raise — BMI or weight limits for certain procedures in the last 5, 10 or 15 years.

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