Wednesday, July 28, 2010

When 500 Pounds Is Not Enough

We are constantly upgrading our numerous operating room tables.  They wear out quickly after years of nearly 24/7 abuse.  The old tables were rated for safe use up to about 500 pounds, depending on the model.  Check out the specifications from one of our new tables.  1100 POUNDS!  Imagine operating on a patient who weighs half a ton.  Picture intubating and anesthetizing a patient who weighs as much as a full grown horse.  The horror.

Our hospital has to be prepared for whatever comes through the door.  If a morbidly obese trauma patient is rushed into the ER, our facilities have to be capable of delivering the same quality of care as a normal weight person.  If the hottest bariatric surgeon in town wants to bring his enormous (pun intended) case load to the hospital we must be prepared to facilitate his laparascopic gastric bypasses and other weight reduction surgeries.  Therefore that means we have to supersize our equipment, everything from operating room tables, to transportation gurneys, to ICU beds, and CT's and MRI's.  The costs are exorbitant when purchasing the equipment.  Naturally all these expenses are then passed along to the insurance companies and patients.  Besides their numerous comorbidities, these are some of the tremendous costs of the obesity epidemic in America.

No comments:

Post a Comment