Most surgery centers are back open, in 'ramp-up' mode — 7 survey insights

Angie Stewart - Print  |

Surgery centers and anesthesia practices are reopening and ramping up elective cases, according to an Anesthesia Business Consultants survey of anesthesiologists and certified registered nurse anesthetists at client practices.

The client practices were surveyed in mid-May. Seven takeaways:

1. More than 79 percent of respondents said they've already resumed elective surgeries, and just over 9 percent said they would do so within a week. An additional 6 percent said they think it will take longer to resume elective cases, and about 5 percent were unsure.

2. More than 71 percent of surgery centers are back in operation, and 15 percent expect to open within the next month. Nearly 13 percent said "unsure" or "not applicable."

3. Seventy-two percent of respondents said they're no longer providing COVID-19-related care outside of regular anesthesia cases, leaving 28 percent still involved in COVID-19-specific care.

4. Eighty-one percent of respondents said there would be a gradual increase in elective cases, rather than an immediate return to normal caseloads. Nearly 16 percent of respondents said they expected the latter.

5. Respondents were divided on exactly how long it will take to reach pre-COVID-19 case volumes. However, more than half said they expected to reach normal caseloads within a month.

6. Just 17.7 percent of respondents expected to see at least 67 percent of typical case volumes in the first week of an elective surgery ramp-up period. About 41 percent anticipated roughly one- to two-thirds of usual volumes, and 33 percent expected no more than one-third of typical levels in that first week.

7. Just under 50 percent of respondents said a hospital committee or administrator would be responsible for determining which elective cases could be performed during a ramp-up period.

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