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Clin Neurol Neurosurg ; 205: 106605, 2021 Mar 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1141677

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The benefits of telemedicine in neurosurgery have been widely studied, especially as its implementation into clinical practice boomed at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, few studies have investigated telemedicine from the perspective of the patient experience. OBJECTIVE: To evaluate patient satisfaction scores of telemedicine outpatient clinic visits in neurosurgery in comparison with in-person visits. METHODS: After obtaining Institutional Review Board approval, Press Ganey surveys from 3/1/2019 to 9/15/2020 were evaluated retrospectively from single-institution, academic neurosurgical clinics. Due to the non-normality of our data, stratified Wilcoxon tests were performed with correction for care provider differences. Domain score probability values were corrected for multiple comparisons. Average scores (range 20-100) are documented as mean ± standard deviation. RESULTS: The response rates were 20% (97 responders) for telemedicine visits and 19% (589 responders) for in-person visits. Patient overall satisfaction score was slightly higher with telemedicine visits compared to in-person corrected for care provider differences (94.2 ± 12.2 vs 93.1 ± 13.4, p = 0.085). The care provider domain demonstrated no statistically significant difference in telemedicine compared to in-person (94.7 ± 14.4 vs 92.4 ± 16.5, p = 0.096). The access domain (93.7 ± 12.3 vs 93.4 ± 12.4, p = 0.999) and overall domains (94.1 ± 12.1 vs 94.4 ± 13.4, p = 1.000) were not found to be different between visit types. CONCLUSION: Telemedicine appears to be a valuable option for neurosurgical patients and is not significantly different to in-person visits in all domains. This study demonstrates that telemedicine visits result in comparable satisfaction scores by neurosurgical patients, and providers should continue offering this option to their patients as we approach the post-COVID era.

2.
Neurosurg Focus ; 49(6): E17, 2020 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-954005

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: Neurosurgical education in the US has changed significantly as a consequence of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Institutional social distancing requirements have resulted in many neurosurgical programs utilizing video conferencing for educational activities. However, it is unclear how or if these practices should continue after the pandemic. The objective of this study was to characterize virtual education in neurosurgery and understand how it should be utilized after COVID-19. METHODS: A 24-question, 3-part online survey was administered anonymously to all 117 US neurosurgical residency programs from May 15, 2020, to June 15, 2020. Questions pertained to the current use of virtual conferencing, preferences over traditional conferences, and future inclinations. The Likert scale (1 = strongly disagree, 3 = neutral, 5 = strongly agree) was used. Comparisons were calculated using the Mann-Whitney U-test. Statistical significance was set at 0.05. RESULTS: One-hundred eight responses were recorded. Overall, 38 respondents (35.2%) were attendings and 70 (64.8%) were trainees. Forty-one respondents (38.0%) indicated attending 5-6 conferences per week and 70 (64.8%) attend national virtual conferences. When considering different conference types, there was no overall preference (scores < 3) for virtual conferences over traditional conferences. In regard to future use, respondents strongly agreed that they would continue the practice at some capacity after the pandemic (median score 5). Overall, respondents agreed that virtual conferences would partially replace traditional conferences (median score 4), whereas they strongly disagreed with the complete replacement of traditional conferences (median score 1). The most common choices for the partial replacement of tradition conferences were case conferences (59/108, 55%) and board preparation (64/108, 59%). Lastly, there was a significant difference in scores for continued use of virtual conferencing in those who attend nationally sponsored conferences (median score 5, n = 70) and those who do not (median score 4, n = 38; U = 1762.50, z = 2.97, r = 0.29, p = 0.003). CONCLUSIONS: Virtual conferences will likely remain an integral part of neurosurgical education after the COVID-19 pandemic has abated. Across the country, residents and faculty report a preference for continued use of virtual conferencing, especially virtual case conferences and board preparation. Some traditional conferences may even be replaced with virtual conferences, in particular those that are more didactic. Furthermore, nationally sponsored virtual conferences have a positive effect on the preferences for continued use of virtual conferences.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Education, Distance/standards , Internship and Residency/standards , Neurosurgical Procedures/education , Surveys and Questionnaires , Telecommunications/standards , Adult , Aged , Education, Distance/methods , Female , Humans , Internship and Residency/methods , Male , Middle Aged , Neurosurgical Procedures/methods , Neurosurgical Procedures/standards
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