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  • Aazad Abbas

A comparison of financial and operational efficiency between smart and traditional insufflation for laparoscopic surgery: A granular analysis


Objective: Smart insufflation (SI) techniques relying on valve and membrane-free insufflation are increasing in usage. Although considerable literature exists demonstrating the benefits of SI on procedural ease and patient outcomes, there remains a paucity describing the financial impact of these devices. The purpose of this study was to determine the financial and efficiency impact of these devices on the operating room and inpatient wards of a hospital.

Methods: A discrete event simulation model representing a typical mid-sized North American hospital comparing SI to traditional insufflation (TI) was generated. The National Surgical Quality Improvement database from 2015 to 2019 was used to populate the model with data supplemented from the literature. Outcomes included length of stay (LOS), duration of surgery (DOS), annual procedure volume, profit, return on investment (ROI), and gross profit margin (GPM). From the literature review, DOS savings were 10–32 minutes/case, while LOS savings were 0–3 days/case.

Results: Implementation of an SI led to an increase in annual throughput of 42–346 (4.4%–36.6%) cases for all procedures and 38 to 297 (4.3%–33.3%) cases for complex procedures. LOS was found to be decreased by 175–614 (18.3%–64.2%) days for all procedures and 231 to 614 (35.6%–77.9%) cases for complex procedures with the implementation of an SI. Together, this resulted in an increase in net profit of $104,685 per annum. The ROI of SI over the TI device was >1000%, and the GPM for the TI was 90.0%, while the GPM for the SI was 71.7%.

Conclusion: Despite the initial financial investment being greater, the implementation of SI offsets these expenses and yields significant financial benefits. Our study demonstrates the financial benefits of SI over TI and illustrates how granular operational and financial analyses of technologies are essential to aid in sound healthcare procurement decision making.

Keywords: Insufflation, Airseal, Surgical efficiency, Financial impact

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