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The advantages of outpatient cataract surgery imply less cost, happier patients, more flexible operating room schedules, and, often, physician ownership of the facility.
Only a few years ago, owning your own eye hospital was the rule not the exception, especially in Europe but also in America. The physician-owner ran the hospital as a small cottage industry, often in his own home. Patients who could pay were admitted; the remainder found their way to a hospital for indigents. The quality control of cataract surgery in the physician's hospital was similar to that in the charitable institution. Since that occurred in an era before antibiotics became available, much could be said in favor of these small hospital enclaves.
With the advent of health insurance (1930s) and Medicare (1960s), the perceived best manner of quality control was to provide payment only for hospitalized patients. The tacit assumption was that procedures not requiring hospitalization
Reinecke RD. Outpatient Surgery: Back to the Barbershop? Arch Ophthalmol. 1985;103(1):26–27. doi:10.1001/archopht.1985.01050010030010
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