Quality and Safety Committee Initiatives

The Quality and Safety Committee monitors activities of various national and international societies and publications that shape the quality standards for colon and rectal surgery. The committee is dedicated to educating ASCRS membership on optimizing the consistent application of goals and standards for the safe and high-quality treatment of colon and rectal surgery patients.

Colorectal Surgery and the Opioid Epidemic: Opioid Stewardship and Safe Prescribing Practices

The opioid epidemic in the United States began following an increase in opioid prescribing starting in the 1990s. It has claimed over 750,000 lives since 1999, including 46,802 drug overdose deaths in the United States in 2018. The amount of opioids prescribed in the United States remains higher than any other country in the world. The overall economic burden of opioid use in the United States is estimated to amount to $78.5 billion dollars per year, including the cost of healthcare, addiction treatment, lost productivity and criminal justice system expenses.

Colorectal Surgery and the Older Adult: How to Optimize Surgical Care for Geriatric Patients

Older adults (age 65 and older) are the fastest growing portion of the population, and the number of older adults in the US is estimated to double by 2050.  With this growth, there has been a parallel increase in surgeries performed on older adults. Nearly half of the operations currently performed in the U.S. are on older adults, and it is predicted that this proportion will increase rapidly with the ongoing aging of the US population.[1] Several key components of caring for older adults undergoing colorectal surgery are outlined in the sections below.

Reducing Surgical Site Infection – Where do I look?

Surgical site infections are classified into three categories based upon the location and depth of infection.  These include superficial, deep and organ surgical site infections. The classification system most commonly used is based upon that published by Horan et al in 1992, and this system is the basis for that used by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the National Healthcare Safety Network, and the National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (NSQIP).

National Activities of the Quality and Safety Committee

National Quality Forum (NQF):

The ASCRS Quality Assessment and Safety Committee has successfully nominated members to NQF Surgery Measures Steering Committee, the Consensus Standards and Approval Committee, and several related measurement evaluation and endorsement committees.

Surgical Quality Alliance (SQA)