Recovery time is very variable and will be based on procedure length, sedation used and condition of the patient. Most facilities are going to criteria-based discharge scores that allow the patient to be discharged when they meet criteria. It must be approved by your anesthesia staff no matter what area you practice as TJC charges them with the rules pertaining to anesthesia and sedation.
That being said, even under terrific conditions, it does take 15-20 minutes, at the very least, to get report, take 2 sets of vitals, DC the IV, give discharge instructions and whatever else you might need to do (set up appts., tests, assist with dressing). 30-45 seems to be the going average in the locale where I work when I talk to others at conferences. No one will ever fault you for keeping them longer (other than waiting relatives
). I also mentioned 2 sets of vitals. The last TJC we went through made a lot of fuss over whether we were able to ascertain of the patient was "stable" if they only had one set of VS after the procedure was done. I believe the comment was made, "how do you tell which way the patient is trending?" We have set our machines on q5min because of that. If they come out waving and wanting to "get outta Dodge", then we use the 5 minute results and get them through as fast as is safe. If they are more snoozy, then we back off and record them q 10-15 min based on their needs. Hope this helps