The Society of American Gastrointestinal and Endoscopic Surgeons (SAGES) continues to provide recommendations and information regarding surgical response to the COVID-19 crisis, which are intended to provide surgeons with additional information to help manage surgical patients during the COVID-19 pandemic. They are not formal guidelines and, due to time constraints, SAGES has not reviewed them by utilising its standard rigorous guidelines process.
“As surgeons in a world caught up in the COVID-19 pandemic, we are faced with how to best care for our patients and protect our healthcare providers, particularly when resources are limited,” said outgoing SAGES President, Dr Aurora Pryor, Chief of Bariatric, Foregut and Advanced GI Surgery at Stony Brook University. “SAGES has tapped into the expertise of our members to help provide the best and most up to date information for our surgeons. Our recommendations and resources are easy to access and navigate and are frequently updated to provide the readily accessible best practices during this pandemic.”
To date, the statements include a wide range of practical recommendations: what to do if deployed to the front line; resources for smoke and gas evacuation; surgical management of cancer patients; N-95 reuse strategies; and, discussions from the Coronavirus Global Surgical Collaborative (CVGSC). CVGSC is an initiative sponsored by SAGES in collaboration with the European Association for Endoscopic Surgery (EAES), the Spanish Association of Surgeons (AEC), the Korean Society of Endoscopic and Laparoscopic Surgeons (KSELS) and the Endoscopic and Laparoscopic Surgeons of Asia (ELSA). The group produces weekly “Notes from the Battlefield,” allowing surgical leaders from affected countries to share what they have learned and continue learning during this COVID-19 global crisis.
“Our specialty requires us to be leaders in our daily lives, which we’ve clearly illustrated during this crisis,” added SAGES new President, Dr Horacio J Asbun, Chief of Hepatobiliary and Pancreas Surgery at Miami Cancer Institute. “We have reacted on multiple levels with the goal of disseminating the best surgical information available. A significant effort has been placed by many of our members and leaders from around the globe on offering knowledge, experience and guidance to practicing providers. There is no better testament to SAGES vision of re-imagining surgical care for a healthier world.”