Covid-19 Created an Elective Surgery Backlog. How Can Hospitals Get Back on Track?

The Harvard Business Review underscores the dire need for hospitals to look at effective ways to clear the increasing burden of backlog in elective surgery.

While the “elective” character of surgeries remains to be defined, the health impact of the delays experienced by patients due to the COVID-19 pandemics is yet to be precisely assessed. In addition, the larger economic and societal consequences do require evaluating, with suggested staggering losses in GDP.

Authors recommend to develop consistent, transparent, and bias-aware algorithms for surgical prioritization” to tackle the growing pattern of backlog and delays and emphasize on the need to sketch out a prioritization framework:

A prioritization framework that is ethics-driven and takes into account the values of multiple stakeholders is necessary to maximize patient benefit and minimize Covid-19 exposure.

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