Modern operating rooms

Today’s modern operating room

The recent trends in healthcare have changed the needs, and footprint, of today’s operating rooms (ORs). But as the industry standard continues to evolve, aseptic technique and the sterile field, patient safety, regulatory compliance and less use of antimicrobial additives all remain top priorities in the surgical center.

The increasing size of ORs

The footprint of the OR is largely dependent on the size of the hospital. Large hospitals may have many smaller and specialized ORs, provided they have the demand to support the investment. Smaller hospitals may prefer to design a large, multi-purpose OR or Hybrid OR that can perform a variety of procedures from orthopedic surgery to vascular surgery.

With the growing need for more frequent, complicated and diverse procedures, the size and complexity of ORs are increasing.

In the 1970s changes in federal regulations increased the minimum size of a general purpose OR from 320 to 400 square feet. But, this seems tiny by today’s standards.

According to the Health Care Advisory Board’s Facility Innovation Brief, most architects and facility planners generally agree that 600 to 650 square feet is ideal for a standard operating room, considering surgical staff circulation space and the amount of mobile equipment required. However, some modern hybrid ORs are as large as 1,200 square feet.