Toolkit for Improving Surgical Care and Recovery
The AHRQ Safety Program for Improving Surgical Care and Recovery (ISCR) Toolkit helps hospitals improve patients' surgical experience by adopting enhanced recovery practices. Enhanced recovery practices are evidence-based processes that are supported by multidisciplinary teams and span the continuum of perioperative care. Hospitals can use the toolkit to apply the evidence for enhanced recovery within the proven principles and methods of AHRQ's Comprehensive Unit-based Safety Program (CUSP) to prevent complications such as surgical site infections, venous thromboembolism, and urinary tract infection, and improve perioperative safety culture.
Who Should Use This Toolkit
This toolkit should be used by perioperative staff, surgical quality improvement specialists, and hospital leadership who are ready to learn more about the importance and impact of standardizing perioperative practices using enhanced recovery practices. A hospital may eventually have multiple ISCR teams, one for each clinical pathway (e.g., colorectal surgery, gynecologic surgery).
How To Use This Toolkit
The toolkit is organized into an overview and four sections that your hospital’s perioperative team can use to promote consistent use of evidence-based practices to enhance recovery of surgical patients, all within the framework of CUSP. The overview is a short roadmap to orient your team to the program. Each section contains guides and tools to support implementation. All materials are publicly available and downloadable. Many can be modified to meet local team needs and criteria. When the program is initially implemented, it is best to start by choosing the scope, then implementing and measuring program impact, and finally sustaining enhanced recovery practices.
The ISCR Toolkit
Each section of the ISCR toolkit contains customizable resources that your hospital’s perioperative team can download and use to standardize surgical techniques using enhanced recovery practices.
- Choosing a service line
- Implementing an ISCR pathway
- Measuring impact
- Planning for sustainability
About the Toolkit Development
These evidence-based resources were developed throughout a 5-year national quality improvement collaborative that brought together subject matter experts and participating hospitals across the country.