Graphs of Actual and Optimized Surgical Schedule

Warning! Not for the graphically challenged.

In reference to the graphs I posted on January 14, 2010, I’ve added several graphs with detailed information. The first graph is of the actual room schedule (non-optimized) before optimizing it by a better scheduling system. Below that is a graph of the same room schedule but in it’s optimized format.  You might notice that I also included the nighttime emergency 7 hour neurosurgical case (not included in the actual day schedule because of its occurring so late) just to show that many cases scheduled late at night because of non-existent room time during the day can be moved earlier if better scheduling is used.

The last file is the room schedule organized by surgeon.  The blue bars represent total surgeon time in the OR.  The pink pars underneath the blue bar represent individual cases the surgeon does.  The length of time between the pink bars represent turnover time from the surgeons’ point of view.

When right clicked, each can be opened in its separate window.  You can then compare them however you wish.  Notice the end times for the rooms of the actual, non-optimized day are later than for the optimized day.  Also notice the short turnover times for most of the surgeons (the distance between the pink bars in the last graph).  One surgeon has overlapping pink bars.  This is because he stepped out of his own case to help in another case.

Actual, non-optimized room schedule

Optimized Room Schedule

Optimized Surgeon schedule
This last graph showed two possible surgeon transcription coding errors, but one of them we know is from a surgeon leaving his room in the middle on an operation to help in another (two rooms at once). Another oddity is a surgeon who has an apparent abnormally long turnover time (which keeps the benefits of optimized scheduling from being even greater). I would need the original anesthesia records again to verify if that was an early emergency case, and if he actually stayed in the OR during that time. Fortunately, the possible coding errors can be easily highlighted. Unfortunately the graphs were made too long after the records were no longer available. This highlights the need for timely analysis and access to people who can clarify abnormal results.

About Brian D Gregory

Board Certified Anesthesiologist for 20 years. MBA from U of Georgia '90: Finance, Data Management, Risk Management. Practiced in multiple US states and Saudi Arabia at KFSH&RC. Taught residents in two locations. Worked with CRNAs for 20 years.
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