Implications of the severe acute respiratory syndrome associated with the novel coronavirus-2 on vascular surgery practices

Faisal Aziz, Jonathan Bath, Matthew R. Smeds

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: We sought to understand the effects of coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) on vascular surgery practices as related to the Vascular Activity Condition (VASCON) scale. Methods: All members of the Vascular and Endovascular Surgery Society were surveyed on the effects of COVID-19 in their practices, educational programs, and self-reported grading of their surgical acuity level using the VASCON scale. Results: Total response rate was 28% (206/731). Most respondents (99.5%) reported an effect of COVID-19 on their practice, and most were VASCON3 or lower level. Most reported a decrease in clinic referrals, inpatient/emergency room consults, and case volume (P <.00001). Twelve percent of respondents have been deployed to provide critical care and 11% medical care for COVID-19 patients. More than one-quarter (28%) face decreased compensation or salary. The majority of respondents feel vascular education is affected; however, most feel graduates will finish with the necessary experiences. There were significant differences in answers in lower VASCON levels respondents, with this group demonstrating a statistically significant decreased operative volume, vascular surgery referrals, and increased hospital and procedure limitations. Conclusions: Nearly all vascular surgeons studied are affected by the COVID-19 pandemic with decreased clinical and operative volume, educational opportunities for trainees, and compensation issues. The VASCON level may be helpful in determining surgical readiness.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Vascular Surgery
StateAccepted/In press - 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Surgery
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

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