Resources & Information

Position Statements

Care of the patient undergoing surgical or other invasive procedure

 Categories:  Clinical Practice   Adopted: Sep 1991  | Amended: Jun 2012  Print Friendly Version  |   Share this item

The evaluation, diagnosis, and care of the surgical patient is primarily the responsibility of the surgeon. The surgeon bears responsibility for ensuring the patient undergoes a preoperative assessment appropriate to the procedure. The assessment shall include a review of the patient’s data relevant to the procedure. The operating surgeon shall have a detailed discussion with each patient regarding the diagnosis and the nature of the surgery, advising the patient fully of the risks involved. It is also the responsibility of the operating surgeon to reevaluate the patient immediately prior to the procedure.

It is the responsibility of the operating surgeon to assure safe and readily available postoperative care for each patient on whom he or she performs surgery. It is not improper to involve other licensed health care practitioners in postoperative care so long as the operating surgeon maintains responsibility for such care. The postoperative note must reflect the findings encountered in the individual patient and the procedure performed.

When identical procedures are done on a number of patients, individual notes should be done for each patient that reflect the specific findings and procedures of that operation.

(Invasive procedures includes, but is not limited to, endoscopies, cardiac catheterizations, interventional radiology procedures, etc. Surgeon refers to the provider performing the procedure )

*This position statement was formerly titled, “Care of the Surgical Patient.”