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April theme: Day Surgery

Day surgery is best defined as ‘the admission of selected patients to hospital for a planned surgical procedure, returning home on the same day’.  True day surgery patients, are day case patients who require full operating theatre facilities and/or a general anaesthetic, and any day cased not included as outpatient or endoscopy’. 

See 'Day Surgery Operational Guide' DH 2002.

Minor and intermediate surgery has been routinely performed in the community for the past few decades.  Procedures as mentioned in ‘The Red Book’ (HMSO 1990) have been performed by most GPs in their surgeries and intermediate types of procedures were performed in the ‘cottage hospitals’ mainly under general anaesthesia.

However, day surgery as a concept of delivering elective care, grew gradually in the UK and in 1992 the Royal College of Surgeons produced a report, Guidelines for Day Case Surgery (RCS 1992).   Day case surgery is now becoming more and more common and is approaching 70% of all surgery performed.  

NHS Quality & Service Improvements tools
Day Surgery – Treat Day Surgery as the Norm


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