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Surgical Outcomes Club
December 2018

Past and Future Role of the Surgical Outcomes Club in Advancing Surgical Outcomes and Health Services Research

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Surgery, Bioinformatics, and Population Health Sciences, University of Utah School of Medicine, Salt Lake City
  • 2Department of Urology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • 3Department of Surgery, Institute for Healthcare Policy and Innovation, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
JAMA Surg. 2018;153(12):1071-1072. doi:10.1001/jamasurg.2018.1975

Club, noun (klub): an association or organization dedicated to a particular interest or activity.

Oxford online dictionary1

Surgical outcomes research for a better part of the last half-century was stereotyped as work that surgeons carried out on nights and weekends, resulting in case reports or case series. Indeed, the most highly cited outcomes articles in surgery during the 1980s were characterized by simple methods, descriptive analyses, and single-center experiences.2 By the 1990s, however, a growing number of surgeons in the United States were working to dispel these stereotypes. A critical mass of surgeon-scientists appreciated the need to apply to surgical outcomes research the same rigorous methods being used by their counterparts in medicine. These methods included the use of decision sciences, large population analyses, informatics, and health service research approaches to critically examine and improve the quality of surgical care.

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