Italian hospitals must reduce duplication of surgical units to improve results

BMJ 2008; 337 doi: (Published 29 October 2008) Cite this as: BMJ 2008;337:a2311
  1. Michael Day
  1. 1Milan

    Italy must encourage greater specialisation in its hospitals’ surgical units, along the lines of US and UK institutions, to cut death rates, the country’s surgeons were told last week.

    Carlo Staudacher, an surgeon at the Istituto Scientifico Ospedale San Raffaele in Milan, told the national congress of the Italian Society of Surgery that in hospitals throughout the country surgical teams were carrying out major procedures that they were not best qualified to do.

    The problem, he said, was that many hospitals had three or four surgical units performing the same procedures, often with radically different success rates. …

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