Monday, April 17, 2006

Record Surgery Makes Good News?

This was recently in the news.

Qld hospitals set surgery record
Queensland's two largest hospitals have set records for the amount of surgery they performed last month. More surgical cases were handled at the Princess Alexandra Hospital than at any other time in its history. The Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital set a March record for the number of surgeries performed this year. Staff at the PA Hospital operated on more than 1,700 patients in March and more than 2,000 patients were treated at the Royal Brisbane.

Let me ask a question - who cares? I feel sorry for the poor administrator / media liaison manager who felt that this was something to be proud of and worthy of generating a press release. Clearly the reporter didn't know what to make of it. Neither do I. Let's just hope that this does not set off a round of "I do more operations that you" comparisons. Before we know it, there will be tearoom arguments at the DHS about it. I'll nominate this week's Bullshit Bingo phrases now:
  • statistical anomaly
  • population-adjusted operation rate
  • minor-major Procedure ratio
  • theatre utilisation
  • staff efficiency index
Don't know what Bullshit Bingo is? Check it out here. All suggestions for medical Bullshit Bingo phrases are welcomed.

By the way, is it just me, or does the ABC news just recycle the same operating theatre photo again and again?

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