Rethinking OR Assistance

Rethinking OR Assistance

Doctors, nurses, and surgeons – already possess the expert knowledge needed. It’s not like they’re working in an office and need professional IT technical support to do their jobs. But what about OR assistance? 

What’s the one industry where users don’t have access to a helpdesk? Medicine.

That’s about to change. 

‘Just In Case’

It’s easy to presume that the on-demand assistance model doesn’t translate to the hospital operating room (OR). But when it comes to implanting devices – such as artificial hips, heart stents, pacemakers and other invasive surgeries – medical reps routinely advise on recommended usage.

But how big is their contribution to these surgeries? Device reps are often asked just a single question about a device – often relating to sizing or the product itself – yet they need to be present at the hospital for an entire surgery, which, depending on its complexity, can often be several hours. And that’s even before planned surgeries get pushed back.

Massive Inefficiencies 

So what’s the problem? Surely having experts available to answer questions in the OR isn’t a huge problem if it means better patient outcomes?

Well, firstly there’s the inefficiency of the process – which is particularly pertinent considering current COVID-19 related OR ‘rotating door’ restrictions, aimed at minimising the number of people in any given surgery.

Also, given that some reps drive hundreds of kilometres between hospitals (depending on the geographical areas they cover) to attend just two surgeries per day – having to scrub in each time and await instructions, on the off-chance they’ll be consulted briefly. And then there’s the waiting around between surgeries if two or more are planned in the same hospital on the same day.

High Cost, Low Likelihood

Secondly, there’s the cost factor to consider. Medical device specialists, while still sales reps, have a lot of product knowledge. They can spend up to six months being trained on a single device. This expertise can cost a considerable amount.

So essentially, for the sake of having one person with specific product knowledge present for the duration of a single surgery, the likelihood is they’ll spend hours waiting around, travel massive distances for a short engagement, and will cost something in the region of €500 per surgery.

There has to be a better way of providing this kind of technical support.

Better Innovation, Improved Service Model

This is primarily why we continue to see demand for our Smart Surgery Assistance Glasses.

But it’s not just the features, innovation, and ability to communicate with experts remotely that’s driving adoption – the service model we’re providing also addresses all of the pain points mentioned above.

A device specialist can now be on call – like a helpdesk operative – from their own offices, meaning a lot less travel, massive cost reductions, and better time management too. A simple answer to a routine question can be answered in real time – potentially meaning that experts can ‘attend’ numerous surgeries every day.

Plus, the ‘rotating door’ policies that hospitals are currently putting in place – and will no doubt continue to enforce for some time yet – can be easily upheld too, meaning less contact with different parties, and ultimately improving patient outcomes.

Ticking All The Boxes

Ultimately, healthcare organisations no longer need to endure the limited service offerings that so many medical device companies have no choice but to offer. Instead, they can uphold patient safety, minimise inefficiencies, and significantly reduce their costs – all while innovating the way in which the OR functions.

It all starts with looking at the situation through a different lens…

At Rods&Cones we aim to help and support as many people as we can, so if you have an immediate need for our Smart Surgery Glasses, please contact us (

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