Ambulatory Surgery Center

CA2 residents have a required rotation in the Ambulatory Surgery Center (ASC), which is located adjacent to the main hospital campus. CA3 residents often take this as a senior elective. The ASC was designed to emulate a private practice type environment, implementing a teamwork approach where we all work to create a high level of patient and family satisfaction. Care is provided by anesthesiologists, CRNAs, surgeons and nurses specially trained in outpatient perioperative care. The physical status of ASC patients ranges from healthy children and young athletes to octogenarians with a number of comorbidities.

The focus of this rotation includes safe and effective patient care and the application of protocol-driven anesthesia to reduce variation in care and to help improve safety and patient outcomes. Methods for accomplishing this include regional anesthesia and analgesia (spinals, epidurals, or peripheral nerve blocks), application of multimodal analgesia, total IV anesthesia, avoidance of opioids, and the avoidance of post-operative nausea and vomiting. All of these items help to facilitate ambulatory anesthesia goals including smooth timely induction, rapid emergence, post-anesthesia care unit bypass, excellent pain control, very low nausea and vomiting rates, and a high level of patient and team satisfaction.

The ASC at the University of Iowa has 8 ORs with state-of-the-art technology; infants, children and adults have separate care areas with private pre-op and post-op rooms. Ambulatory surgery is a growing area and as such, the ASC is expanding with 4 additional operating rooms currently under construction. Two of the new ORs are scheduled to open in the Spring of 2013.

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