|At the surgery center before surgery with her bear, compliments of the surgery center.|
1. Size: Hosptials are big and busy. Surgery Centers are smaller and often located right near a hospital. Hospitals have sick people, so if you are concerned about germs, it's just something to consider.
2. Check-in: Check in time varies between a surgery center and a hospital. We didn't have insanely long waits at the hospital, but the surgery center, just because of its smaller footprint, was faster for us to get from the car, to check-in, to the waiting area, and then to the operating room.
3. Level of care: If you can go to a children's hospital, you will get very specialized care, targeted to children, which is very nice. The children's hospital gave my daughter a Barbie doll after her surgery. That was very nice. At Denver Children's, one parent is allowed to accompany the child going in for surgery until he/she is a asleep under anesthesia. We didn't get to do that at the surgery center. However, the surgery center did a wonderful job with our three year old. There was a little stuffed animal waiting for her which she got to take with her to surgery. They even allowed her to take her nasty, filthy blankie too! The doctors and nurses at the surgery center were very sweet to our daughter. It helped me feel good about my decision to have her surgery there.
4. Cost: Surgery Centers generally cost a bit less. I tried to get a quote from the hospital and the surgery center here so that I could compare the two, but the hospital never got back to me.
(For those of you wondering what the insurance gets billed for a job like this, it's roughly $12,000.)
5. Accessibility: In my experience, the Surgery Center really wins here. When I call, I get a person on the line right away. I ask questions and I get connected with a knowledgeable person. When call-backs are necessary, they are fast. Calling a hospital is a bit more daunting, starting with an automated message and then a menu to choose from.