Here are the steps to take prior to a surgery, during the pre-operative appointment. Make sure you handle medication history, preoperative instructions, post operative care, diagnostic tests with your checklist.
- Add a preoperative step in your surgery scheduling workflow
You don’t necessarily need a pre-op in your surgery scheduling process/workflow.
I recommend that you almost always should have a pre-op and a post-op date set up.
This will ensure that you get another chance to counsel the patient, prepare them for the surgery, get all loose ends tied up.
- Go over the medical history with the patient
Wait to receive the surgical / medical clearance from from the PCP office.
Then call the patient to go over the medical history with the patient.
Often patients do not understand what a surgery is and what is not (a classic example is a C section).
Here’s a checklist sample to follow
- Go over medication history with the patient
As a surgery scheduler, dig deeper into the patient’s medications.
Specifically ask for any over the counter “herbal medication” the patient might be taking.
Most patients do not think that herbal medication can interfere with anything related to their surgeries.
However, some herbal medications might interfere with anesthesia.
- Order diagnostic tests
First, look for any diagnostic tests your doctor has ordered. In case, your surgeon forgot to, you can also remind the surgeon to order specific tests.
These diagnostic tests might be needed based on the age, medical history of the patient.
This is almost never a standard list.
However these are prerequisites of your particular surgery.
- Obtain the diagnostic test results
You need to get the results obtained at least a week before the surgery date.
This means, your patient needs to schedule these tests 1-2 weeks before the surgery date.
There’s a lot more information available here on Medscape.
- Spend time educating the patient
Patients are, understandably, anxious and might delay their care / surgery. You need to educate your patient multiple times. This helps reduce costly surgery no-shows and cancellations.
- Explainpreoperative fasting, medications, anesthesia, and postoperative care
The surgery scheduler should be advising the patient on preoperative fasting, medications, anesthesia, and postoperative care that the patient should expect.
The reasons for fasting should be explained to the patient repeatedly.
This is main reason why most of your surgery cancellations occur.
Patients simply do not understand that not fasting opens them up to chances of vomiting, nausea post operatively.