Region’s first robotic hybrid operating room to open at UK Chandler Hospital

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Jan. 25, 2012) − The University of Kentucky will open one of the country’s largest hybrid operating rooms — the first of its kind in the region — as well as eight new, state-of-the-art, multi-purpose operating rooms, in the next few weeks, as the most recent phase of construction and expansion at the UK Albert B. Chandler Hospital is completed.

The latest phase completed includes the unique hybrid operating room which combines the most advanced and high-quality imaging technology with surgical operative capabilities to create a unique operating room environment as well as:

• 42 bed pre-operative and post anesthesia care unit (PACU)
• Surgical pathology area
• Family waiting area
• Anesthesia workspace and offices
• Staff lounges and conference room
• Central Sterile Supply

“The opening of the hybrid operating room and the addition of these new modern traditional operating rooms as well as the support areas including the new Central Sterile Supply and pre- and post-operative care unit, is another milestone in providing world-class facilities with cutting edge technology right here in the Bluegrass for our patients,” said Dr. Michael Karpf, UK executive vice president for health affairs. “When a patient and their family thinks about where they can go to get the best advanced specialty care, we want them to feel confident that they won’t have to travel far from their home.”

Advantages to a hybrid operating room include greater accuracy of surgical procedures, reduced recovery time, reduced risk of postoperative complications and need for treatments in the hospital’s intensive care unit, said Dr. Joseph “Jay” Zwischenberger, surgeon-in-chief for UK HealthCare.

“Cardiothoracic and vascular surgeries will be the predominant surgical procedures performed in the hybrid OR and will allow us to more efficiently use hospital resources and medical staff while providing a higher quality of care,” Zwischenberger said.

The hybrid OR combines state-of-the-art imaging capabilities with the ability to perform surgical procedures in one operating room. Industrial robotic technology is utilized with an imaging system that can be controlled at the OR table, allowing for the whole patient to be easily imaged in a manner not available elsewhere in the Bluegrass. The functionality and flexibility of the robotic arm lets it move to almost any position around the patient, allowing the surgeon to see internal organs from various perspectives with access to more anatomical details, including the most minuscule blood vessels. By having complete information to determine a precise diagnosis, surgical planning can be more specific and treatment more targeted. Having the technology at their fingertips enables surgeons to go directly from diagnosis to surgical remedy.

In addition to the hybrid operating room, eight new traditional operating rooms have been completed and also will begin to be utilized by the UK HealthCare medical team in the next few weeks. The new ORs are designed to support any type of operating procedure — including the most complex trauma and neurological surgical cases — and are flexible and adaptive for future needs. With the opening of this new surgical area, trauma patients treated at the region’s only level-1 trauma center will be able to be moved efficiently from the heliport to the Emergency Department and operating rooms through a central transportation system within the hospital.

“Our mission is to provide high-quality, patient-centered surgical care to every patient everyday,” said Dr. Bernard Boulanger, UK HealthCare surgical services director. “Coupled with our highly trained surgical team, these new operating facilities and technology improvements provide us with the environment to provide an exceptional level of care.”

Overall, construction and expansion of the new Pavilion A at UK Chandler Hospital is expected to be completed in six to 10 years and is designed to support patient care for the next 100 years. Once fully fit out, the 1.2 million-square-foot facility will include 512 large, private patient rooms. When combined with the Kentucky’s Children Hospital, the facility will have a total of 650 private rooms, replacing the existing UK Chandler Hospital.

To date, a new patient parking garage, adult and pediatric emergency departments and two patient care floors of the hospital, as well as all public areas on the ground and first levels, have opened and were completed on schedule and on budget.

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