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Annals of Surgical Oncology

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Sustained Growth of a University-Based Endocrine Surgery Program Over 10 Years

Shonan Sho MD, Emily S. Singer BA, Eric Kwok BA, Randi Hissom MBA, Avital Harari MD, Masha J. Livhits MD, Michael W. Yeh MD
Endocrine Tumors
Volume 24, Issue 11 / October , 2017

Abstract

Background

Endocrine surgery continues to mature as a subspecialty field. We describe the clinical performance of an academic endocrine surgery program (ESP) over its first 10 years.

Methods

We examined all endocrine procedures performed during the 10-year period (2006–2015) following the inception of the ESP. Institutional and state-level data on case volume, patient geographic origin, and hospital-side costs were obtained.

Results

Endocrine case volume increased by approximately ninefold over the study period (from 102 cases in 2006 to 919 cases in 2015). The rate of growth remained approximately linear, and was driven by geographic expansion of referral regions coupled with transitioning low- to moderate-acuity operations to venues outside of the main tertiary care hospital. Market share across the eight-county Southern California region grew by more than twofold over the study period. Increased utilization of outpatient surgery led to cost reductions, averaging 11.1% per case by 2015.

Conclusions

Establishment of an academic ESP can lead to sustained clinical growth and a fundamental shift in regional referral patterns. The nation’s continued need for skilled high-volume endocrine surgeons represents opportunities for medical centers to institute their own dedicated endocrine surgery programs.

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