The Acute Surgical Unit (ASU) at Royal North Shore Hospital (RNSH) was the “Local Solutions” winner in the 2019 Northern Sydney Local Health District Quality and Improvement Awards for the project titled — ‘Better managing gastrointestinal surgery”. Congratulations to Olivia Kirkland and team.
Prior to the establishment of the ASU, the large number of emergency gastrointestinal procedures performed at RNSH meant that elective surgery patients had to be rescheduled or procedures performed out of hours. The Acute Surgical Unit was established to address these challenges through a range of measures which included a dedicated theatre and a data-driven quality improvement process. In addition, an online web application was developed to provide clinicians with ready access to relevant protocols and procedures. This data-driven approach has helped improve the care of acute surgical patients at RNSH. In particular, it has resulted in a 40 per cent reduction in elective surgery cancellations and a 45% reduction in unnecessary after-hours surgeries.