The patterns and costs of the da Vinci robotic surgery system in a large academic institution

Rhonda Prewitt, Victor Bochkarev, Corrigan L. McBride, Sonja Kinney, Dmitry Oleynikov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


The da Vinci ™Robotic System (dVRS) is the latest advancement in laparoscopic surgery allowing the surgeon more accurate and precise control of instrumentation with an added three-dimensional image. Technology comes with a price, $1.3 million. Due to charitable contributions from the Durham family, the University of Nebraska was the eighth Medical Center in the USA to obtain a dVRS in June 2000. UNMC analyzed 224 dVRS surgical procedures from July 2000 to February 2007. These procedures were designated by surgical service and further scrutinized for length of stay, and cost. We also reviewed trends in operative usage, academic and public relations components with this innovative technology. The dVRS was used for multiple other purposes that were beneficial including research with engineering graduate students, training for surgical residents, display and demos as a means for public relations. Primarily general and urologic surgeons utilized the dVRS. General surgeons were the early adopters of the new technology, the greatest growth and utilization of the equipment has been in urologic procedures, which has outpaced general surgery in the past year. Cost analysis shows a subtle benefit with a reduced length of stay by an average of 4 days. Average direct costs were found to be greater with the dVRS by $1,470. Overall, the effects of the dVRS are vast reaching and are fundamental to the growth of an academic institution and continued progress in minimally invasive surgery.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)17-20
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Robotic Surgery
Issue number1
StatePublished - May 2008


  • Academic institutions
  • Da Vinci
  • Laparoscopic robotic surgery
  • Training

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Health Informatics


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