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J Neurointerv Surg ; 12(11): 1049-1052, 2020 Nov.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-809207


BACKGROUND: Academic physicians aim to provide clinical and surgical care to their patients while actively contributing to a growing body of scientific literature. The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has resulted in procedural-based specialties across the United States witnessing a sharp decline in their clinical volume and surgical cases. OBJECTIVE: To assess the impact of COVID-19 on neurosurgical, stroke neurology, and neurointerventional academic productivity. METHODS: The study compared the neurosurgical, stroke neurology, and neurointerventional academic output during the pandemic lockdown with the same time period in previous years. Editors from a sample of neurosurgical, stroke neurology, and neurointerventional journals provided the total number of original manuscript submissions, broken down by months, from the year 2016 to 2020. Manuscript submission was used as a surrogate metric for academic productivity. RESULTS: 8 journals were represented. The aggregated data from all eight journals as a whole showed that a combined average increase of 42.3% was observed on original submissions for 2020. As the average yearly percent increase using the 2016-2019 data for each journal exhibited a combined average increase of 11.2%, the rise in the yearly increase for 2020 in comparison was nearly fourfold. For the same journals in the same time period, the average percent of COVID-19 related publications from January to June of 2020 was 6.87%. CONCLUSION: There was a momentous increase in the number of original submissions for the year 2020, and its effects were uniformly experienced across all of our represented journals.

Coronavirus Infections , Efficiency , Neurology/statistics & numerical data , Neurosurgery/statistics & numerical data , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral , Research/statistics & numerical data , Stroke/physiopathology , Stroke/surgery , Universities/statistics & numerical data , COVID-19 , Humans , Neurosurgery/trends , Periodicals as Topic , Publishing , Quarantine/statistics & numerical data , Research/trends , Universities/trends
World Neurosurg ; 140: e373-e380, 2020 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-593961


BACKGROUND: As of May 4, 2020, the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has affected >3.5 million people and touched every inhabited continent. Accordingly, it has stressed health systems worldwide, leading to the cancellation of elective surgical cases and discussions regarding health care resource rationing. It is expected that rationing of surgical resources will continue even after the pandemic peak and may recur with future pandemics, creating a need for a means of triaging patients for emergent and elective spine surgery. METHODS: Using a modified Delphi technique, a cohort of 16 fellowship-trained spine surgeons from 10 academic medical centers constructed a scoring system for the triage and prioritization of emergent and elective spine surgeries. Three separate rounds of videoconferencing and written correspondence were used to reach a final scoring system. Sixteen test cases were used to optimize the scoring system so that it could categorize cases as requiring emergent, urgent, high-priority elective, or low-priority elective scheduling. RESULTS: The devised scoring system included 8 independent components: neurologic status, underlying spine stability, presentation of a high-risk postoperative complication, patient medical comorbidities, expected hospital course, expected discharge disposition, facility resource limitations, and local disease burden. The resultant calculator was deployed as a freely available Web-based calculator ( CONCLUSIONS: We present the first quantitative urgency scoring system for the triage and prioritizing of spine surgery cases in resource-limited settings. We believe that our scoring system, although not all encompassing, has potential value as a guide for triaging spine surgical cases during the COVID pandemic and post-COVID period.

Betacoronavirus/pathogenicity , Coronavirus Infections , Elective Surgical Procedures , Health Care Rationing , Pandemics , Patient Selection , Pneumonia, Viral , COVID-19 , Decision Making , Elective Surgical Procedures/methods , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Triage/methods