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American College of Surgeons provides recommendations for elective surgery during COVID-19 pandemic
Tue - April 14, 2020 2:45 pm  |  Article Hits:4710  |  A+ | a-
Corona Virus Pandemic
Corona Virus Pandemic
The coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic is the defining global health crisis of our time and the greatest challenge we have faced since World War Two. Since its emergence in Asia late last year, the virus has spread to every continent except Antarctica. Cases are rising daily in Africa the Americas, and Europe.

Until the predicted inflection point in the exposure, the graph has been passed and a potentially rapid and overwhelming uptick in critical patient care needs can be supported by the health care infrastructure, the ACS recommends all hospitals, health systems, and surgeons “thoughtfully review all scheduled elective procedures with a plan to minimize, postpone or cancel electively scheduled operations, endoscopies or other invasive procedures,” according to the release. The ACS also recommends immediately minimizing the use of essential items needed to care for patients, such as ICU beds, personal protective equipment, terminal cleaning supplies, and ventilators.
 

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on the healthcare system, including elective surgery. In response to the pandemic, the American College of Surgeons (ACS) has provided recommendations for elective surgery to ensure the safety of both patients and healthcare providers. In this essay, we will explore the ACS's recommendations for elective surgery during the COVID-19 pandemic and their impact on the healthcare system.

Background:

Elective surgery is a type of surgery that is planned in advance and is not considered an emergency. Examples of elective surgery include joint replacements, hernia repairs, and cosmetic surgery. The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on elective surgery, with many hospitals canceling or postponing non-essential surgeries to preserve resources and reduce the risk of transmission of the virus.

In response to the pandemic, the American College of Surgeons (ACS) has provided recommendations for elective surgery to ensure the safety of both patients and healthcare providers. These recommendations are based on the latest available data on the COVID-19 pandemic and are designed to help hospitals and healthcare providers make informed decisions about the scheduling and performance of elective surgeries.

The ACS's Recommendations for Elective Surgery:

The ACS's recommendations for elective surgery during the COVID-19 pandemic include the following:

  1. Consideration of local prevalence of COVID-19: Hospitals and healthcare providers should consider the local prevalence of COVID-19 when making decisions about elective surgery. If the prevalence of COVID-19 is high, hospitals and healthcare providers may need to postpone or cancel non-essential surgeries to preserve resources and reduce the risk of transmission of the virus.

  2. Prioritization of surgeries: Hospitals and healthcare providers should prioritize surgeries based on medical need and urgency. Patients with life-threatening conditions or conditions that could significantly worsen if surgery is delayed should be given priority over patients with less urgent needs.

  3. Screening of patients: Hospitals and healthcare providers should screen all patients for symptoms of COVID-19 before surgery. Patients with symptoms should be tested for COVID-19 before surgery and should not undergo surgery until they have recovered from the virus.

  4. Personal protective equipment (PPE): Healthcare providers should wear appropriate PPE when performing elective surgery. This includes gloves, gowns, masks, and eye protection.

  5. Cleaning and disinfection: Hospitals and healthcare providers should follow appropriate cleaning and disinfection procedures to reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19.

  6. Post-operative care: Hospitals and healthcare providers should provide appropriate post-operative care to patients to reduce the risk of complications and transmission of COVID-19.

Impact on the Healthcare System:

The ACS's recommendations for elective surgery during the COVID-19 pandemic have had a significant impact on the healthcare system. Hospitals and healthcare providers have had to adapt to new protocols and procedures to ensure the safety of both patients and healthcare providers.

One of the most significant impacts of the ACS's recommendations has been the reduction in the number of elective surgeries performed. Many hospitals have canceled or postponed non-essential surgeries to preserve resources and reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19. This has led to a backlog of surgeries and an increased wait time for patients in need of elective surgery.

The ACS's recommendations have also led to changes in the way elective surgeries are performed. Hospitals and healthcare providers have had to implement new screening protocols and use appropriate PPE to reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19. These changes have increased the cost of performing elective surgery and have placed additional burdens on healthcare providers.

One potential positive impact of the ACS's recommendations is the increased awareness of the importance of infection control and prevention. Hospitals and healthcare providers have had to implement new cleaning and disinfection procedures and provide appropriate post-operative care to reduce the risk of complications and transmission of COVID-19. These changes may lead to improved infection control and prevention practices in the future.

Conclusion:

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on elective surgery, and the American College of Surgeons has provided recommendations to ensure the safety of both patients and healthcare providers. These recommendations include consideration of the local prevalence of COVID-19, prioritization of surgeries, screening of patients, use of appropriate PPE, cleaning and disinfection, and post-operative care.

The ACS's recommendations have had a significant impact on the healthcare system, with many hospitals canceling or postponing non-essential surgeries to preserve resources and reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19. The changes in protocols and procedures have increased the cost of performing elective surgery and placed additional burdens on healthcare providers. However, the increased awareness of the importance of infection control and prevention may lead to improved practices in the future.

As the pandemic continues to evolve, it is essential for hospitals and healthcare providers to continue to monitor the local prevalence of COVID-19 and adjust their protocols and procedures accordingly. The safety of both patients and healthcare providers must remain a top priority in the performance of elective surgery during the COVID-19 pandemic. By following the ACS's recommendations and remaining vigilant in infection control and prevention, hospitals and healthcare providers can ensure the safe and effective performance of elective surgery.



 
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