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1.
Am J Otolaryngol ; 43(5): 103546, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2027845

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To compare patient responses to validated satisfaction surveys for in-person vs virtual otolaryngology ambulatory evaluation. METHODS: National Research Corporation (NRC) Health patient survey answers between April 2020 and February 2021 were divided into in-person and virtual visit modalities. Responses were compared with two group t-tests or Wilcoxon rank sum tests. Relationships between visit modality by gender, age, race, and sub-specialty visit type and satisfaction scores were examined by testing interactions with separate ANOVA models. RESULTS: 1242 in-person and 216 virtual patient satisfaction survey responses were highly favorable for all themes (communication, comprehension of treatment plan, and likelihood of future referral) with both visit modalities. Higher satisfaction for in-person evaluation was seen with communication ("care providers listened" 3.68 (0.67)-on a scale of 1-no to 4-yes, definitely) vs 3.57 (0.78), p = 0.0426; "courtesy/respect" 3.75 (0.62) vs 3.66 (0.69), p = 0.0265)), and comprehension of treatment plan ("enough info about treatment" 3.53 (0.79) vs 3.37 (0.92), p = 0.0120; "know what to do" 3.62 (0.76) vs 3.46 (0.88), p = 0.0023)). No differences were detected for future referral of clinic or provider. There was no association between visit modality and patient sociodemographic factors or sub-specialty visit types. Main effects were observed with respect to race, gender, and sub-specialty visit type. CONCLUSION: Patient satisfaction scores for virtual visit evaluation were high and comparable to in-person evaluation, with a slight preference for in-person. Future studies are needed to identify which patients and conditions are particularly suited for virtual vs in-person delivery of otolaryngology services.


Subject(s)
Otolaryngology , Ambulatory Care Facilities , Humans , Otolaryngology/methods , Patient Satisfaction , Referral and Consultation , Surveys and Questionnaires
2.
Int J Pediatr Otorhinolaryngol ; 160: 111229, 2022 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1914488

ABSTRACT

Telehealth in otolaryngology is gaining popularity as a potential tool for increased access for rural populations, decreased specialist wait times, and overall savings to the healthcare system. The adoption of telehealth has been dramatically increased by the COVID-19 pandemic limiting patients' physical access to hospitals and clinics. One of the key challenges to telehealth in general otolaryngology and otology specifically is the limited physical examination possible on the ear canal and middle ear. This is compounded in pediatric populations who commonly present with middle ear pathologies which can be challenging to diagnose even in the clinic. To address this need, various otoscopes have been designed to allow patients, their parents, or primary care providers to image the tympanic membrane and middle ear, and send data to otolaryngologists for review. Furthermore, the ability of these devices to capture images in digital format has opened the possibility of using artificial intelligence for quick and reliable diagnostic workup. In this manuscript, we provide a concise review of the literature regarding the efficacy of remote otoscopy, as well as recent efforts on the use of artificial intelligence in aiding otologic diagnoses.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Otolaryngology , Telemedicine , Artificial Intelligence , Child , Humans , Otolaryngology/methods , Otoscopy/methods , Pandemics
4.
J Laryngol Otol ; 135(7): 584-588, 2021 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1207119

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The impact of coronavirus disease 2019 on healthcare has led to rapid changes in otolaryngology service provisions. As such, new standard operating procedures for the management of suspected tonsillitis or quinsy were implemented in our centre. METHODS: A retrospective audit was performed of acute referrals to ENT of patients with suspected tonsillitis, peritonsillar cellulitis or quinsy, during the 10 weeks before (group 1) and 10 weeks after (group 2) implementation of the new standard operating procedures. RESULTS: Group 2 received fewer referrals. Fewer nasendoscopies were performed and corticosteroid use was reduced. The frequency of quinsy drainage performed under local anaesthetic increased, although the difference was not statistically significant. Hospital admission rates decreased from 56.1 to 20.4 per cent, and mean length of stay increased from 1.13 to 1.5 days. Face-to-face follow up decreased from 15.0 to 8.2 per cent, whilst virtual follow up increased from 4.7 to 16.3 per cent. There were no significant differences in re-presentation or re-admission rates. CONCLUSION: Management of suspected tonsillitis or quinsy using the new standard operating procedures appears to be safe and effective. This management should now be applied to an out-patient setting in otherwise systemically well patients.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Peritonsillar Abscess/therapy , Quality Improvement , Tonsillitis/therapy , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Biopsy, Fine-Needle , Drainage , Female , Hospitalization/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Length of Stay/statistics & numerical data , London , Male , Middle Aged , Otolaryngology/methods , Otolaryngology/standards , Otolaryngology/statistics & numerical data , Practice Patterns, Physicians'/statistics & numerical data , Referral and Consultation , Retrospective Studies , Young Adult
5.
Clin Otolaryngol ; 46(4): 689-691, 2021 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1191425

ABSTRACT

Remote communication in ENT has been expanding, spurred by the COVID-19 pandemic. Conferences and teaching have moved online, enabling easier participation and reducing financial and environmental costs. Online multi-disciplinary meetings have recently been instigated in Africa to discuss management of cases in head and neck cancer, or cochlear implantation, expanding access and enhancing patient care. Remote patient consultation has also seen an explosion, but existing literature suggests some caution, particularly because many patients in ENT need an examination to enable definitive diagnosis. Ongoing experience will help us to better understand how remote communication will fit into our future working lives, and also where face-to-face interaction may still be preferable.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Delivery of Health Care/methods , Education, Medical/methods , Needs Assessment/organization & administration , Otolaryngology/methods , Pandemics , Remote Consultation/methods , Humans , Learning , SARS-CoV-2 , South Africa/epidemiology
6.
Clin Otolaryngol ; 46(4): 699-719, 2021 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1147332

ABSTRACT

AIMS: Remote or tele-consultation has become an emerging modality of consultation in many specialities, including ENT. Advantages include increasing accessibility, potential to reduce costs and, during the COVID-19 pandemic, reduced risk of infection transmission. Here, we systematically collate and synthesise the evidence base on outcomes from remote consultation in adult and paediatric ENT services. METHODS: We performed a review in accordance with PRISMA guidelines. We searched Medline and Embase for relevant articles. Outcomes include specific patient pathway efficiency measures (including number of healthcare visits, lead time, touch time and handoff), patient/clinician satisfaction, cost analysis and safety implications. RESULTS: From 6325 articles screened, 53 met inclusion criteria. Publications included studies on remote consultation for initial, preoperative and follow-up assessment (including postoperative). In most instances, remote consultation reduced costs and time from referral to assessment and was associated with high patient satisfaction. However, a face-to-face follow-up appointment was required in 13%-72% of initial consultations, suggesting that remote consultation is only appropriate in selected cases. CONCLUSION: Remote consultation is appropriate and preferable for ENT consultation in specific conditions and circumstances. Future research should look to better define those conditions and circumstances, and report using recognised quality standards and outcome measures.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Otolaryngology/methods , Otorhinolaryngologic Diseases/epidemiology , Pandemics , Remote Consultation/methods , Telemedicine/methods , Comorbidity , Humans , Patient Satisfaction , SARS-CoV-2
7.
Ann Otol Rhinol Laryngol ; 130(11): 1245-1253, 2021 Nov.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1140414

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: Define aerosol and droplet risks associated with routine otolaryngology clinic procedures during the COVID-19 era. METHODS: Clinical procedures were simulated in cadaveric heads whose oral and nasal cavities were coated with fluorescent tracer (vitamin B2) and breathing was manually simulated through retrograde intubation. A cascade impactor placed adjacent to the nares collected generated particles with aerodynamic diameters ≤14.1 µm. The 3D printed models and syringes were used to simulate middle and external ear suctioning as well as open suctioning, respectively. Provider's personal protective equipment (PPE) and procedural field contamination were also recorded for all trials using vitamin B2 fluorescent tracer. RESULTS: The positive controls of nebulized vitamin B2 produced aerosol particles ≤3.30 µm and endonasal drilling of a 3D model generated particles ≤14.1 µm. As compared with positive controls, aerosols and small droplets with aerodynamic diameter ≤14.1 µm were not detected during rigid nasal endoscopy, flexible fiberoptic laryngoscopy, and rigid nasal suction of cadavers with simulated breathing. There was minimal to no field contamination in all 3 scenarios. Middle and external ear suctioning and open container suctioning did not result in any detectable droplet contamination. The clinic suction unit contained all fluorescent material without surrounding environmental contamination. CONCLUSION: While patients' coughing and sneezing may create a baseline risk for providers, this study demonstrates that nasal endoscopy, flexible laryngoscopy, and suctioning inherently do not pose an additional risk in terms of aerosol and small droplet generation. An overarching generalization cannot be made about endoscopy or suctioning being an aerosol generating procedure. LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: 3.


Subject(s)
Aerosols/adverse effects , COVID-19 , Disease Transmission, Infectious/prevention & control , Endoscopy , Otolaryngology , Risk Adjustment/methods , Suction , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/transmission , Cadaver , Endoscopy/adverse effects , Endoscopy/instrumentation , Endoscopy/methods , Humans , Otolaryngology/methods , Otolaryngology/standards , Outcome Assessment, Health Care , Personal Protective Equipment/classification , Personal Protective Equipment/virology , Research Design , Risk Assessment/methods , SARS-CoV-2 , Suction/adverse effects , Suction/instrumentation , Suction/methods
8.
Ann Otol Rhinol Laryngol ; 130(10): 1105-1111, 2021 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1102260

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: The COVID-19 pandemic has introduced a period of social isolation that has challenged the ability of providers to uphold in-person patient care. Although commonplace in pediatric otolaryngology, multidisciplinary clinics pose a unique challenge during this time due to increased infection risk from multiple patient-provider interactions. Guidance on the application of telemedicine for multidisciplinary clinics in pediatric otolaryngology is limited. METHODS: We provide comprehensive guidance on best practices for conducting telemedicine visits for a number of multidisciplinary otolaryngology clinics using our experiences at a single tertiary care children's hospital. A review of literature to support the adoption of telemedicine in multidisciplinary pediatric otolaryngology is also incorporated. RESULTS: Telemedicine was successfully adopted for 7 multidisciplinary pediatric clinics with a variety of specialists: aerodigestive disorders, congenital hearing loss, microtia/aural atresia, orofacial clefting, sleep disorders, tracheostomy care, and velopharyngeal dysfunction. CONCLUSIONS: Telemedicine is feasible for a variety of multidisciplinary clinics and its optimization is critical for providing care to complex pediatric otolaryngology patients during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Otolaryngology/methods , Otorhinolaryngologic Diseases/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2 , Telemedicine/organization & administration , Child , Comorbidity , Global Health , Humans , Otorhinolaryngologic Diseases/therapy , Pandemics
10.
Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg ; 163(6): 1137-1139, 2020 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1044140

ABSTRACT

As the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic continues to evolve through the United States and other countries, differing rates of progression and decline are occurring based on varied population densities. While some health systems are reaching a steady state of new patient cases, others are seeing a leveling off or decline, allowing for restoration of normal practices. This "reverse-surge" planning and implementation process is a colossal undertaking for health systems trying to reacquire patient access and financial stability while preserving necessary resources and maintaining precautions for another potential surge. For the otolaryngologist, reverse-surge planning involves additional workflow adjustments in the outpatient and operating room settings given the abundance of COVID-19 virus in the upper aerodigestive tract. As the reverse-surge best practices are still under development, open communication between otolaryngology colleagues and health system leadership is paramount to optimize efficiency and maintain an adequate measure of safety for patients and our health care teams.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Disease Transmission, Infectious/prevention & control , Infection Control/methods , Otolaryngology/methods , Pandemics , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/transmission , COVID-19 Testing , Health Personnel , Humans , Interdisciplinary Communication , Otolaryngologists , Personal Protective Equipment , United States
11.
JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg ; 147(4): 336-342, 2021 04 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1039148

ABSTRACT

Importance: During the novel coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic, telehealth has become a vital component of health care delivery. For otolaryngology evaluations, examination of the ear and oropharynx is important but difficult to achieve remotely. Objective: To assess the feasibility of patient use of low-cost digital videoscopes and smartphones for examination of the ear and oropharynx. Design, Setting, and Participants: A prospective quality improvement study was conducted in an academic adult otolaryngology clinic including 23 patients who presented for an in-person appointment and owned a smartphone device. The study was conducted from July 1 to 15, 2020. Interventions: Participants were asked to capture pictures and videos of their ear canals and oropharynx with digital videoscopes and their smartphones under real-time guidance over a telehealth platform. They were then surveyed about their experience. Main Outcomes and Measures: The primary outcomes were ratings by health care clinicians and a blinded otolaryngologist reviewer of image acceptability. Secondary outcomes included participant time to image acquisition and willingness to purchase digital videoscopes for telehealth use. Results: Of the 23 participants included, 14 were women (61%); mean age was 50 years (range, 21 to 80 years). Of the images obtained using the digital otoscope ear examination, 95% were considered acceptable by the health care clinicians and 91% were considered acceptable by the blinded reviewer; 16 participants (70%) reported that the otoscope was easy to use. The mean time to acquire images for both ears was 114 seconds (95% CI, 84-145 seconds). Twenty-one participants (91%) were willing to pay for a digital otoscope for telehealth use. For the oropharyngeal examination, a greater proportion of smartphone video examinations were considered acceptable by clinicians (63% acceptability) and the blinded reviewer (55%) compared with the digital endoscope (clinicians, 40%; blinded reviewer, 14%). The mean time required for the oropharyngeal examination smartphone video capture was shorter at 35 seconds compared with both the digital endoscope (difference, -27 seconds; 95% CI, -7 to -47 seconds) and smartphone photo capture (difference, -53 seconds; 95% CI, -20 to -87 seconds). Conclusions and Relevance: Digital otoscopes and smartphones apparently can facilitate remote head and neck physical examination in telehealth. Digital otoscopes were useful for ear examinations, and smartphone videos appeared to be the most useful for oropharyngeal examinations. Further studies are required to determine specific diagnostic capabilities in various telehealth practice settings.


Subject(s)
Otolaryngology/economics , Otolaryngology/instrumentation , Remote Consultation/methods , Smartphone , Video Recording , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Ear Canal/pathology , Feasibility Studies , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Office Visits , Oropharynx/pathology , Otolaryngology/methods , Otoscopes/economics , Patient Acceptance of Health Care , Patient Satisfaction , Pilot Projects , Prospective Studies , Young Adult
12.
Am J Otolaryngol ; 42(2): 102873, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1009278

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The Covid-19 pandemic has had a profound impact on the Otolaryngology outpatient clinical practice, which is at high risk of respiratory viral transmission due to the close contact between the examiner and the patient's airway secretions [1]. Moreover, most otolaryngological procedures, including oropharyngoscopy, generate droplets or aerosols from high viral shedding areas [1]. Thus, only non-deferrable consultations were performed in the outbreak's acute phase. Along with the re-opening of elective clinical services and the impending second wave of the outbreak, a reorganization is necessary to minimize the risk of nosocomial transmission [1]. METHODS: This video (Video 1) shows how to safely conduct an outpatient Otorhinolaryngological consultation, focusing on complete ear, nose and throat examination, according to evidences from the published literature and Otolaryngological societies guidelines [2,3]. RESULTS: After telephonic screening, patients reporting Covid-19 symptoms or closecontact with a Covid-19 case within the last 14 days are referred to telehealth services [1-3]. To avoid crowding, the patient is admitted alone, after body temperature control, except for underage or disabled people [1]. The waiting room assessment must guarantee a social distance of 6 ft [1-3]. The consultation room is reorganized into two separate areas (Fig. 1): 1) a clean desk area, where an assistant wearing a surgical mask and gloves, handles the patient's documentation and writes the medical report, keeping proper distance from the patient, and 2) a separate consultation area, where the examiner, equipped with proper personal protective equipment (Fig. 2) [3,4], carries out the medical interview and physical examination. Endoscopic-assisted ear, nose and throat inspection using a dedicated monitor allows the examiner to maintain an adequate distance from the patient throughout the procedure while providing an optimal view (Figs. 3-6) [3]. Recent evidence shows that nasal endoscopy does not increase droplet production compared to traditional otolaryngological examination [5]. When necessary, nasal topic decongestion and anesthesia must be performed using cottonoids rather than sprays [3]. The patient keeps the nose and mouth covered throughout the consultation, lowering the surgical mask on the mouth for nasal endoscopy and removing it only for oropharyngoscopy. After the consultation, the doffing procedure must be carried out carefully to avoid contamination [4]. All the equipment and surfaces must undergo high-level disinfection with 70% alcohol or 0.1% bleach solutions [3]. Proper room ventilation must precede the next consultation [3]. CONCLUSIONS: The hints provided in this video are useful to ensure both patient and examiner safety during Otolaryngological outpatient consultations and to reduce SARS-CoV-2 transmission.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Infection Control/methods , Otolaryngology/methods , Referral and Consultation , Ambulatory Care , COVID-19/transmission , Humans , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Pandemics , Personal Protective Equipment
13.
Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg ; 165(2): 239-243, 2021 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1007249

ABSTRACT

The meteoric rise of telemedicine early in the COVID-19 pandemic might easily be mistaken for an ephemeral trend-one reaching its zenith in a moment of crisis. To the contrary, momentum has been mounting for telehealth over decades. The recent increase in telecare reveals its potential to deliver efficient, patient-centered, high-quality care in an increasingly technology-dependent landscape. Prior to COVID-19, surgeons lagged behind medical counterparts in embracing telemedicine; however, the pragmatic imperatives for remote care of patients and changes to Medicare removed key barriers to adoption. Otolaryngology-head and neck surgery has innovated across subspecialties, leading in COVID-19 scholarship and year-over-year publications on telemedicine. Yet, improved access to subspecialists is tempered by a digital divide that threatens to exacerbate disparities. Otolaryngology is poised to lead the transformation of procedural specialties while ensuring equitable care.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Delivery of Health Care/methods , Otolaryngology/methods , Telemedicine/trends , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Forecasting , Humans , Middle Aged , Young Adult
14.
Ann Acad Med Singap ; 49(11): 897-901, 2020 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1001389

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a major impact in healthcare systems across the world, with many hospitals having to come up with protocols and measures to contain the spread of the virus. This affects various specialties' clinical practices in many ways. Since early 2020 in Singapore, the Department of Otorhinolaryngology at Tan Tock Seng Hospital had to rapidly adapt to this pandemic as we provided services to the main healthcare facility combating the virus in our country. We had to design new workflows and also remain flexible in view of the ever-changing situation. There are 6 important domains for an otolaryngology department or any clinical department in general to consider when making adjustments to their practices in an outbreak: (1) clinical work, (2) education, (3) research, (4) safety of patients and staff, (5) morale of medical staff and (6) pandemic frontline work. We hope that the sharing of our experiences and the lessons learnt will be useful for both our local and international colleagues.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Delivery of Health Care/methods , Otolaryngology/methods , Ambulatory Care , Biomedical Research , COVID-19/prevention & control , Education, Medical , Elective Surgical Procedures , Health Workforce , Humans , Morale , Otolaryngology/education , Otorhinolaryngologic Surgical Procedures , Personal Protective Equipment , Personnel Staffing and Scheduling , SARS-CoV-2 , Singapore/epidemiology , Workflow
15.
Curr Opin Allergy Clin Immunol ; 21(1): 38-45, 2021 02 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-998486

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: The WHO announced the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak as a pandemic in February 2020 with over 15 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 globally to date. Otolaryngologists are at a high risk of contracting COVID-19 during this pandemic if there is inadequate and improper personal protective equipment provision, as we are dealing with diseases of the upper-aerodigestive tract and routinely engaged in aerosol-generating procedures. RECENT FINDINGS: This article discusses the background and transmission route for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, its viral load and temporal profile as well as precaution guidelines in outpatient and operative setting in otorhinolaryngology. SUMMARY: As it is evident that COVID-19 can be transmitted at presymptomatic or asymptomatic period of infections, it is essential to practice ear, nose, and throat surgery with high vigilance in a safe and up-to-standard protection level during the pandemic. This article provides a summary for guidelines and recommendations in otorhinolaryngology.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Otolaryngology/methods , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Aerosols , Ambulatory Care Facilities , Asymptomatic Infections , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , Humans , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Infectious Disease Transmission, Professional-to-Patient/prevention & control , Nasopharynx/virology , Oropharynx/virology , Otorhinolaryngologic Surgical Procedures/methods , Personal Protective Equipment , Physical Examination , Viral Load
16.
Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg ; 163(4): 673-675, 2020 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-999408

ABSTRACT

The emergence of the novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and the subsequent need for physical distancing have necessitated a swift change in health care delivery. Prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, many institutions utilized an interdisciplinary clinic model including both a laryngologist and a speech-language pathologist for the evaluation of patients with voice, swallowing, and upper airway disorders. To improve access, many providers are pursuing the use of interdisciplinary telemedicine to provide individualized patient-centered care while allowing for physical distancing. The purpose of this commentary is to review the current literature regarding telemedicine in laryngology and speech-language pathology as well as the current and future states of practice for interdisciplinary tele-evaluations.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Delivery of Health Care/methods , Disease Transmission, Infectious/prevention & control , Otolaryngology/methods , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Telemedicine/organization & administration , Ambulatory Care Facilities , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/transmission , Humans , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/transmission , SARS-CoV-2
17.
Laryngoscope ; 131(8): 1741-1748, 2021 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-986313

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE/HYPOTHESIS: The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in telehealth becoming commonplace in many health care fields. Telehealth benefits include improving access, decreasing costs, and elevating patient's experience. A review of cost minimization (CM) analyses was performed in order to explore scientific studies associated with integrating tele-otolaryngology in clinical practice. Our primary objective was to evaluate published literature for cost related to the implementation of telemedicine across otolaryngology, and to determine CM when compared to in-person visits. STUDY DESIGN: Systematic Literature Review. METHODS: We performed a systematic review using PubMed, EMBASE, and Cochrane in May 2020, to identify studies with a cost analysis of tele-otolaryngology care. Inclusion criteria focused on articles citing CM data from telehealth services. Literature quality was assessed using the MINORS scoring system. RESULTS: From 380 original articles screened only nine evaluated cost in otolaryngology. CM in the US ranged from $68 to $900 per visit. Cost was evaluated in general otolaryngology, sleep medicine, otology, and head and neck cancer surgery, the latter had the most benefit. The most common types of telehealth visits were routine follow-up and screening. Data were insufficient for meta-analysis. CONCLUSIONS: Telemedicine has been trialed across various otolaryngology subspecialties; its incorporation is projected to have a meaningful impact on access to specialty care. This research suggests that the delivery of virtual care reduces cost with the potential of increasing net revenue across multiple otolaryngology subspecialties. Further studies are needed to better discern the entirety of cost savings and the best settings for integration. LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: 3 Laryngoscope, 131:1741-1748, 2021.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/economics , Otolaryngology/economics , Telemedicine/economics , Cost-Benefit Analysis , Humans , Otolaryngology/methods , SARS-CoV-2
18.
J Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg ; 49(1): 81, 2020 Dec 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-992570

ABSTRACT

Healthcare services in many countries have been partially or completely disrupted by the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic since its onset in the end of 2019. Amongst the most impacted are the elective medical and surgical services in order to conserve resources to care for COVID-19 patients. As the number of infected patients decrease across Canada, elective surgeries are being restarted in a staged manner. Since Otolaryngologists - Head & Neck Surgeons manage surgical diseases of the upper aerodigestive tract where the highest viral load reside, it is imperative that these surgeries resume in a safe manner. The aim of this document is to compile the current best evidence available and provide expert consensus on the safe restart of rhinologic and skull base surgeries while discussing the pre-operative, intra-operative, and post-operative care and tips. Risk assessment, patient selection, case triage, and pre-operative COVID-19 testing will be analyzed and discussed. These guidelines will also consider the optimal use of personal protective equipment for specific cases, general and specific operative room precautions, and practical tips of intra-operative maneuvers to optimize patient and provider safety. Given that the literature surrounding COVID-19 is rapidly evolving, these recommendations will serve to start our specialty back into elective rhinologic surgeries over the next months and they may change as we learn more about this disease.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Testing , COVID-19 , Nose/surgery , Otolaryngology/standards , Otorhinolaryngologic Surgical Procedures/standards , Pandemics , Personal Protective Equipment/standards , Preoperative Care/standards , Skull Base/surgery , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Disease Transmission, Infectious/prevention & control , Humans , Otolaryngology/methods , Otorhinolaryngologic Diseases/surgery , Postoperative Care/standards , Preoperative Care/methods
19.
Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg ; 163(1): 91-93, 2020 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-913954

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 is a rapidly growing global pandemic caused by a novel coronavirus. With no vaccine or definitive treatment, public health authorities have recommended a strategy of "social distancing," reducing individual interaction, canceling elective procedures, and limiting nonessential services. Health care providers must determine what procedures are considered "elective," balancing risk of treatment delays with that of coronavirus exposure to patient, family, and providers. Given critical periods for language development and the long-term impact of auditory deprivation, some audiologic and otologic services should be considered essential. In this article, we describe the experience of a quaternary referral pediatric hospital in Seattle, the epicenter of COVID-19 in the United States, and share strategies for risk minimization employed by Seattle Children's Hospital. We hope that this work can be a reference for other centers continuing care for children who are deaf and hard of hearing during the COVID-19 and future resource-limiting crises.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections/complications , Deafness/therapy , Disease Transmission, Infectious/prevention & control , Hearing Loss/therapy , Otolaryngology/methods , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/complications , COVID-19 , Child , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/transmission , Deafness/complications , Hearing Loss/complications , Humans , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Pneumonia, Viral/transmission , Public Health , SARS-CoV-2
20.
Int J Pediatr Otorhinolaryngol ; 139: 110447, 2020 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-882582

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To describe the implementation of telemedicine in a pediatric otolaryngology practice during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) global pandemic. METHODS: A descriptive paper documenting the development and application of telemedicine in a tertiary academic pediatric otolaryngology practice. RESULTS: A total of 51 established patients were seen via telemedicine within the first 2 weeks of telemedicine implementation. Seven (7) patients were no shows to the appointment. The median patient age was 5 years old, with 55% male patients. Common diagnoses for the visits included sleep disordered breathing/obstructive sleep apnea (25%) and hearing loss (19.64%). Over half (50.98%) of visits were billed at level 4 visit code. DISCUSSION: The majority (88%) of visits during the first 2 weeks of telemedicine implementation in our practice were completed successfully. Reasons that patients did not schedule telemedicine appointments included preference for in person appointments, and lack of adequate device at home to complete telemedicine visit. Limitations to our telemedicine practice included offering telemedicine only to patients who had home internet service, were established patients, and English-speaking. Trainees were not involved in this initial implementation of telemedicine. CONCLUSIONS: COVID-19 has driven the rapid adoption of telemedicine in outpatient medicine. Our group was able to institute an effective telemedicine practice during this time.


Subject(s)
Academic Medical Centers/organization & administration , COVID-19/prevention & control , Health Services Accessibility/organization & administration , Infection Control/organization & administration , Otolaryngology/organization & administration , Pediatrics/organization & administration , Telemedicine/organization & administration , Academic Medical Centers/methods , COVID-19/epidemiology , Child , Child, Preschool , Female , Georgia/epidemiology , Humans , Infection Control/methods , Male , Otolaryngology/methods , Pandemics , Pediatrics/methods , Telemedicine/methods
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