News & Events

Hospital management optimisation and more personalised patient pathways for pre and post surgery

9 - August

In Oulu University Hospital, there are approximately 20,000 annual operations which of 7,500 are urgent. Of those remaining 12,500, more than half are with lower priority, to be operated within months instead of weeks or days.

There is great variability depending on the type of surgery. The majority of the elective patients are operated on as day case surgery, and discharged after the operation. A high proportion of these patients are operated based on the referral, and the surgeon meets the patient in the morning before the operation. Other patients visit the surgical policlinic before the operation in case of the need for preoperative optimization so called pre-policlinic. In some patient groups, such as spine surgery or orthopaedic surgery, there are predefined pathways while in cancer surgery (gastro and ENT) the pathway is individual

The implementation of AICCELERATE will enhance the scheduling of non-urgent elective patients. Each operation is individual in terms of difficulty, risks and need for time resources. At the moment, reserve scheduling is leading to underutilization in operation room time in some cases, and overutilization in others. By recognizing the patients with special needs and predicting the time stamps throughout the perioperative process, the resources will be used more optimally.

From the patient’s perspective, AI-enhanced scheduling will decrease the risk of cancelling due to resource issues, the needed resources are available and overcrowded wards and PACUs are avoided. With optimized scheduling patients can come to the hospital at the right time, not several hours before the operation. Surgeons can operate more; more patients with the fast predicted flow can be scheduled per day, and on the other hand, for those with expected difficulties and deviations, adequate time resources are allocated. And for the scheduling nurses, the Smart Hospital Care Pathway Engine (SHCP) will provide remarkable enhancement in the daily work; a high number of manual phases of the scheduling work will be performed automatically.

The SHCP is scalable with several environments, from operation scheduling to scheduling policlinic visits or a barbershop service, for instance. It will be able to process tons of data to provide the best possible result allowing more personalised care for each patient because machines don’t get tired of calculating.

One last note…

There are a few things to be taken into account when developing AI solutions. First, study your process in detail, including everything. Second, describe your needs in detail; clarify to yourself and your team what you want. Third, study your available data in detail. Fourth, check again if the available data is truly available. And finally, involve your organization.


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