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Surgical IT

Saskatchewan to install surgical scheduling systems

REGINA – The introduction of an electronic scheduling system will help Saskatchewan health regions improve their use of operating room spaces in the province, allowing for cost efficiencies and better patient care.

Learning Minister Deb Higgins, on behalf of Health Minister Len Taylor, announced the first stage of a project to introduce an operating room scheduling system for Saskatchewan hospitals. The new system will replace paper-based and outdated computer systems with a common information system for use in six health regions.

The new surgical management system -- to be supplied by Picis -- is part of an ongoing effort to create an electronic health record system for Saskatchewan. It will cost $2 million, plus implementation costs.

The automated system will link with patient registration and materials management systems and in the future will connect with the Saskatchewan Surgical Registry, which tracks surgery wait times in different health regions.

The health regions will work over the next two years with Saskatchewan Health to change from their current processes and systems to a common information system.

“Reducing wait times for surgery is a priority,” Higgins said. We are providing tools that will allow better use of surgical resources through increased efficiency in scheduling operating room staff and surgical suites.”

“We are pleased to be part of this project to implement the Surgical Information System,” Five Hills Health Region vice-president Cheryl Craig said. “Through our work with the Saskatchewan Surgical Care Network (SSCN) assessment tools and registry, health regions have shown a commitment to careful monitoring of surgical wait times and increased surgical access. This new system will allow us to make further progress.”

“The new information system will allow health regions to schedule surgical theatres, surgical teams and surgical supplies seamlessly.”