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2.
J Neuroophthalmol ; 41(3): 362-367, 2021 09 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1367100

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 public health emergency (PHE) has significantly changed medical practice in the United States, including an increase in the utilization of telemedicine. Here, we characterize change in neuro-ophthalmic care delivery during the early COVID-19 PHE, including a comparison of care delivered via telemedicine and in office. METHODS: Neuro-ophthalmology outpatient encounters from 3 practices in the United States (4 providers) were studied during the early COVID-19 PHE (March 15, 2020-June 15, 2020) and during the same dates 1 year prior. For unique patient visits, patient demographics, visit types, visit format, and diagnosis were compared between years and between synchronous telehealth and in-office formats for 2020. RESULTS: There were 1,276 encounters for 1,167 patients. There were 30% fewer unique patient visits in 2020 vs 2019 (477 vs 670) and 55% fewer in-office visits (299 vs 670). Compared with 2019, encounters in 2020 were more likely to be established, to occur via telemedicine and to relate to an efferent diagnosis. In 2020, synchronous telehealth visits were more likely to be established compared with in-office encounters. CONCLUSIONS: In the practices studied, a lower volume of neuro-ophthalmic care was delivered during the early COVID-19 public health emergency than in the same period in 2019. The type of care shifted toward established patients with efferent diagnoses and the modality of care shifted toward telemedicine.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Eye Diseases/epidemiology , Neurology/organization & administration , Office Visits/trends , Ophthalmology/organization & administration , Pandemics , Telemedicine/methods , Comorbidity , Female , Humans , Male , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , United States/epidemiology
4.
JAMA Ophthalmol ; 139(8): 896-897, 2021 08 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1290764

ABSTRACT

Importance: Emerging vision scientists who have yet to be awarded their first independent funding may have their research careers disproportionately affected by early COVID-19-related disruptions. In September 2020, the Alliance for Eye and Vision Research convened a panel of 22 such scientists (nominated by their academic institutions) to communicate to the US Congress about the importance of vision research. As part of the effort, interviews were conducted with scientists about the effect of the pandemic on their research. Observations: Qualitative areas of adverse consequences from the early months of COVID-19 disruptions included striking interruptions of patient-based research, limits on other types of clinical research, loss of research time for scientists with young children (especially women), challenges with animal colonies and cell cultures, impediments to research collaborations, and loss of training time. Conclusions and Relevance: The early months during the COVID-19 pandemic increased career stress on many early-stage investigators in the vision field and delayed (and may potentially derail) their ability to attract their first independent research funding grant. As a result, federal and private granting agencies may need to take these factors into account to retain talented, early-stage vision researchers.


Subject(s)
Biomedical Research/organization & administration , COVID-19/complications , Career Choice , Ophthalmology/organization & administration , Research Personnel/education , SARS-CoV-2 , Stress, Psychological/etiology , Biomedical Research/education , Child, Preschool , Female , Humans , Male , Ophthalmology/education , Quarantine/psychology , Research Personnel/psychology , Research Support as Topic/organization & administration , Stress, Psychological/psychology , Surveys and Questionnaires , United States
5.
Rom J Ophthalmol ; 65(2): 125-129, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1285635

ABSTRACT

Social Media in the COVID-19 pandemic context has become a real dissemination medium of ophthalmology information for both physicians and health care consumers. This trend of sharing information has revealed new and innovative interventions in Ophthalmology such as teleophthalmology on Social Media by providing synchronous and asynchronous consultations, education, and prevention solutions as well as scientific research findings. This paper is a review of the current challenges and limitations faced by ophthalmologists and health care consumers during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Consumer Health Information , Information Dissemination/methods , Ophthalmology/organization & administration , SARS-CoV-2 , Social Media/organization & administration , Health Information Systems , Humans , Information Centers , Patient Satisfaction , Telemedicine
6.
Surv Ophthalmol ; 66(6): 999-1008, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1164513

ABSTRACT

We review the use of telemedicine in glaucoma and its possible roles in the COVID-19 outbreak. We performed a literature search of published human studies on teleglaucoma on May 12, 2020, using search terms including "telemedicine" and "glaucoma" that were in English and published over the prior 10 years. This search strategy yielded a total of 14 relevant articles after manual curation. Of the 14 articles, 4 were from the same randomized control trial, 7 were prospective studies, 2 were retrospective studies, 1 was descriptive analysis, and 1 was cost-effective analysis. Seven discussed the common ophthalmologic measurements used in teleglaucoma. Four demonstrated the cost effectiveness of the use of teleglaucoma, and 3 articles investigated patient satisfaction with the use of teleglaucoma. Three articles investigated the correlation between teleglaucoma and face-to-face clinics. Five articles discussed the current use and opportunities of teleglaucoma. When compared to in-person care, teleglaucoma is more time and cost-effective, shows high patient satisfaction and fair to good agreement with in-person care; however, there is great variation in the reported sensitivity of glaucoma screening, warranting further studies to establish its efficacy. For glaucoma management, both the sensitivity and specificity must be further improved before it could be put into extensive use. Nevertheless, it is worthwhile to explore the possible extensive application of teleglaucoma in monitoring "glaucoma suspects" and maintaining glaucoma follow-up during a pandemic outbreak to reduce the risk of transmission of infection.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Disease Outbreaks , Glaucoma/diagnosis , Ophthalmology/organization & administration , SARS-CoV-2 , Telemedicine/organization & administration , Delivery of Health Care , Health Services Accessibility , Humans , Ocular Hypertension/diagnosis , Ophthalmology/methods , Prospective Studies , Remote Consultation/methods , Retrospective Studies , Telemedicine/methods
7.
Ann Palliat Med ; 10(2): 2331-2337, 2021 Feb.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1138979

ABSTRACT

Currently, the epidemics situation of COVID-19 is still grim. As a high-risk department, it is necessary to take corresponding prevention and control measures in the ophthalmology department. To guide the ophthalmology department of medical institutions to recover from the post-pandemic period of COVID-19, we designed relevant prevention and control strategies formulated by the National Health Committee, combined with our practical work of hospital pandemic management. The prevention and control strategies contained ward settings, channel design, allocation of protective equipment, screening of hospitalized patients, supervision-guided improvement, ward disinfection, the management of patients and escorts. There are 64 doctors and nurses who had standardized training during the post-pandemic period in the ophthalmology department. A total of 185 patients were admitted to the ophthalmology department of our institution, and 107 operations were successfully performed during that period. We made a follow-up visit two weeks after discharge to ask whether the patients had fever and/or other symptoms and whether he had been diagnosed with a COVID-19 case. Ultimately the ophthalmic ward was free of infection with the novel coronavirus. These showed that our prevention strategies were effective for ophthalmology department to defending COVID-19 in the process of recovering medical services.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Hospital Departments/organization & administration , Infection Control/standards , Ophthalmology/organization & administration , Pandemics , Hospitalization , Humans
9.
Ann Acad Med Singap ; 50(1): 61-76, 2021 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1100577

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Teleophthalmology may assist the healthcare sector in adapting to limitations imposed on clinical practice by a viral pandemic. A scoping review is performed in this study to assess the current applications of teleophthalmology for its suitability to diagnose, monitor or manage ophthalmological conditions with accuracy. METHODS: A search of PubMed was conducted for teleophthalmology-related articles published from 1 January 2018 to 4 May 2020. Only articles that focused on the use of teleophthalmology in terms of diagnosis and management, as well as its benefits and detriments, were included. The Mixed Methods Appraisal Tool (MMAT) was used to assess the quality of the included articles. RESULTS: A total of 38 articles were assessed at the full-text level. There were 2 qualitative studies and 1 quantitative randomised controlled trial, while the majority were either quantitative descriptive studies (19, 50.0%) or quantitative non-randomised studies (16, 42.1%). Overall, 8 studies described reducing manpower requirements, 4 described reducing direct patient-doctor contact, 17 described storage of medical imaging and clinical data, and 9 described real-time teleconferencing. The MMAT analysis revealed limitations in appropriate sampling strategy in both quantitative non-randomised studies (9 of 16, 56.3%) and quantitative descriptive studies (9 of 19, 47.4%). Cost-effectiveness of teleophthalmology was not performed in any included study. CONCLUSION: This current review of the various aspects of teleophthalmology describes how it may potentially assist the healthcare sector to cope with the limitations imposed by a viral pandemic through technology. Further research is required to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of the various strategies.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Ophthalmology/organization & administration , Telemedicine/organization & administration , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/transmission , Humans
10.
Isr Med Assoc J ; 23(2): 76-81, 2021 Feb.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1085727

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) pandemic presented a major medical management challenge to ophthalmology departments throughout Israel. OBJECTIVES: To examine the managerial challenges, actions taken, and insights of directors of ophthalmology departments in Israel during the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: We conducted a cross sectional survey of directors of ophthalmology departments during the COVID-19 pandemic while the Israeli population was quarantined. RESULTS: All 21 directors answered the survey. The majority of the COVID-19 admissions were located in the center of Israel (53%) and Jerusalem (30%). E-communication took a central role in coping with the pandemic with 80% of the directors satisfied with this form of communication; 75% reported a reduction in clinical and surgery volume of at least 25%, and 40% reported reallocations of manpower. Most of the medical staff used gloves, a face shield, disposable robe, and a mask with no uniformity across departments. Cross satisfaction was noted regarding a hospital's ability to equip the departments. Lack of preparation for post-pandemic era was reported by all directors, but one (95%). Directors sought guidelines and uniformity regarding outpatient referral to the hospital (p = 0.035). CONCLUSIONS: Guidelines via safe digital platforms aid in management decisions and uniformity across departments. Advanced preparation is needed to prevent adverse clinical outcomes and to maintain treatment continuum. Our results can be used to guide and help improve the preparedness of ophthalmology departments during COVID-19 and for future pandemics.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Hospital Departments/organization & administration , Ophthalmology/organization & administration , Personal Protective Equipment/statistics & numerical data , Practice Guidelines as Topic , Adult , Communication , Cross-Sectional Studies , Disposable Equipment/statistics & numerical data , Gloves, Protective/statistics & numerical data , Hospital Departments/standards , Humans , Israel , Masks/statistics & numerical data , Middle Aged , Personal Protective Equipment/supply & distribution , Quarantine , Referral and Consultation , Surveys and Questionnaires
12.
J Fr Ophtalmol ; 44(3): 307-312, 2021 Mar.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1078008

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE: This study aimed to evaluate the ability of a freely accessible internet algorithm to correctly identify the need for emergency ophthalmologic consultation for correct diagnosis and management. METHOD: This retrospective observational cohort study was based on the first 100 patients who requested recommendations on the necessity of breaking the lockdown for emergency ophthalmology consultation during the period from March to May 2020. RESULTS: Ninety-one patients completed questionnaires. Forty-nine were directed to emergency consultation and 42 to differed scheduled visits or telemedicine visits. One patient sent for emergency consultation had an overestimated severity and could have been seen later, while two patients initially recommended for a scheduled visit were considered appropriate for emergency consultation. However, these patients' management did not suffer as a consequence of the delay. The sensitivity of the algorithm, defined as the number of emergency consultations suggested by the algorithm divided by the total number of emergency consultations deemed appropriate by the practitioner's final evaluation, was 96.0%. The specificity of the algorithm, defined as the number of patients recommended for delayed consultation by the algorithm divided by the number of patients deemed clinically appropriate for this approach, was 97.5%. The positive predictive value, defined as the number of appropriate emergency consultations divided by the total number of emergency consultations suggested by the algorithm, was 97.9%. Finally, the negative predictive value, defined as the number of appropriately deferred patients divided by the number of deferred patients recommended by the algorithm, was 95.2%. CONCLUSION: This study demonstrates the reliability of an algorithm based on patients' past medical history and symptoms to classify patients and direct them to either emergency consultation or to a more appropriate deferred, scheduled appointment. This algorithm might allow reduction of walk-in visits by half and thus help control patient flow into ophthalmologic emergency departments.


Subject(s)
Algorithms , Appointments and Schedules , COVID-19/epidemiology , Emergencies , Eye Diseases/therapy , Ophthalmology/organization & administration , Quarantine , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Cohort Studies , Communicable Disease Control/standards , Emergencies/epidemiology , Emergency Medical Services/organization & administration , Emergency Service, Hospital/organization & administration , Emergency Service, Hospital/standards , Eye Diseases/epidemiology , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Paris/epidemiology , Referral and Consultation/organization & administration , Referral and Consultation/standards , Reproducibility of Results , Retrospective Studies , Surveys and Questionnaires , Telemedicine/organization & administration , Telemedicine/standards , Young Adult
14.
Eur J Ophthalmol ; 31(2): 321-327, 2021 Mar.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-939985

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic has altered the clinical landscape immeasurably. The need to physical distance requires rethinking how we deliver ophthalmic care. Within healthcare, we will need to focus our resources on the five T's: Utilising technology, multidisciplinary clinical teams with wide professional talents need to work efficiently to reduce patient contact time. With regular testing, this will allow us to reduce the risk further. We also must acknowledge the explosion of different modalities to train our future ophthalmologists and the global challenges and advantages that these bring. Finally, we must not forget the psychological impact that this pandemic will have on ophthalmologists and ancillary staff, and need to have robust mechanisms for support.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/transmission , Communicable Disease Control/methods , Delivery of Health Care/organization & administration , Health Plan Implementation/organization & administration , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Ophthalmology/organization & administration , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , Telemedicine/methods
15.
J Diabetes Res ; 2020: 9036847, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-894922

ABSTRACT

Recently, telemedicine has become remarkably important, due to increased deployment and development of digital technologies. National and international guidelines should consider its inclusion in their updates. During the COVID-19 pandemic, mandatory social distancing and the lack of effective treatments has made telemedicine the safest interactive system between patients, both infected and uninfected, and clinicians. A few potential evidence-based scenarios for the application of telemedicine have been hypothesized. In particular, its use in diabetes and complication monitoring has been remarkably increasing, due to the high risk of poor prognosis. New evidence and technological improvements in telemedicine application in diabetic retinopathy (DR) have demonstrated efficacy and usefulness in screening. Moreover, despite an initial increase for devices and training costs, teleophthalmology demonstrated a good cost-to-efficacy ratio; however, no national screening program has yet focused on DR prevention and diagnosis. Lack of data during the COVID-19 pandemic strongly limits the possibility of tracing the real management of the disease, which is only conceivable from past evidence in normal conditions. The pandemic further stressed the importance of remote monitoring. However, the deployment of device and digital application used to increase screening of individuals and monitor progression of retinal disease needs to be easily accessible to general practitioners.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Diabetic Retinopathy/diagnosis , Diabetic Retinopathy/therapy , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Telemedicine , Betacoronavirus/physiology , COVID-19 , Cost-Benefit Analysis , Diabetic Retinopathy/epidemiology , Humans , Mass Screening/economics , Mass Screening/methods , Mass Screening/organization & administration , Mass Screening/trends , Ophthalmology/economics , Ophthalmology/methods , Ophthalmology/organization & administration , Ophthalmology/trends , SARS-CoV-2 , Telemedicine/economics , Telemedicine/organization & administration , Telemedicine/standards , Telemedicine/trends
17.
Graefes Arch Clin Exp Ophthalmol ; 258(11): 2341-2352, 2020 Nov.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-723303

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE: Technological advances in recent years have resulted in the development and implementation of various modalities and techniques enabling medical professionals to remotely diagnose and treat numerous medical conditions in diverse medical fields, including ophthalmology. Patients who require prolonged isolation until recovery, such as those who suffer from COVID-19, present multiple therapeutic dilemmas to their caregivers. Therefore, utilizing remote care in the daily workflow would be a valuable tool for the diagnosis and treatment of acute and chronic ocular conditions in this challenging clinical setting. Our aim is to review the latest technological and methodical advances in teleophthalmology and highlight their implementation in screening and managing various ocular conditions. We present them as well as potential diagnostic and treatment applications in view of the recent SARS-CoV-2 virus outbreak. METHODS: A computerized search from January 2017 up to March 2020 of the online electronic database PubMed was performed, using the following search strings: "telemedicine," "telehealth," and "ophthalmology." More generalized complementary contemporary research data regarding the COVID-19 pandemic was also obtained from the PubMed database. RESULTS: A total of 312 records, including COVID-19-focused studies, were initially identified. After exclusion of non-relevant, non-English, and duplicate studies, a total of 138 records were found eligible. Ninety records were included in the final qualitative analysis. CONCLUSION: Teleophthalmology is an effective screening and management tool for a range of adult and pediatric acute and chronic ocular conditions. It is mostly utilized in screening of retinal conditions such as retinopathy of prematurity, diabetic retinopathy, and age-related macular degeneration; in diagnosing anterior segment condition; and in managing glaucoma. With improvements in image processing, and better integration of the patient's medical record, teleophthalmology should become a more accepted modality, all the more so in circumstances where social distancing is inflicted upon us.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus , Communicable Diseases, Emerging/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Disease Outbreaks , Ophthalmology/methods , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Telemedicine/methods , COVID-19 , Humans , Ophthalmology/organization & administration , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Telemedicine/organization & administration
20.
Curr Opin Ophthalmol ; 31(5): 396-402, 2020 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-703541

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: To discuss key considerations involved in adapting an in-person ophthalmology conference to a virtual medium. RECENT FINDINGS: In 2020, several ophthalmological societies have held or are planning to hold virtual conferences in lieu of their previously scheduled in-person ophthalmology conference because of the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic. The strategic meeting components attempted to be retained in these transitions include educational information disseminating, academic discussion with colleagues, sponsorships, and networking. Live-streamed components of a virtual conference may be entirely real time or may include a combination of both prerecorded and live-streamed components. A virtual meeting may offer either a single live-streamed program or several concurrent live-streamed programs from which attendees can choose. The availability of on-demand content, mechanisms for audience participation, avenues for industry interaction and contribution, registration costs, and continuing medical education credit availability vary between virtual meeting formats. SUMMARY: Transition of an in-person ophthalmology conference to a virtual format with retention of the inherent value associated with the meeting is possible and the experiences of societies executing this adaptation can be helpful for others entering this space. There are numerous considerations regarding meeting format and logistics to contemplate in light of each meeting's specific audience and objectives.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus , Congresses as Topic/organization & administration , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Ophthalmology/organization & administration , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Videoconferencing , COVID-19 , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Videoconferencing/organization & administration
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