Impact of COVID-19 on urology practice: A global perspective and snapshot analysis
de la Rosette, Jean J. M. C. H.
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CitationGravas, S., Bolton, D., Gomez, R., Klotz, L., Kulkarni, S., Tanguay, S. ... de la Rosette, J. J. M. C. H. (2020). Impact of COVID-19 on urology practice: A global perspective and snapshot analysis. Journal of Clinical Medicine, 9(6). https://dx.doi.org/10.3390/jcm9061730
The global impact of the 2019 novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic on urology practice remains unknown. Self-selected urologists worldwide completed an online survey by the Societe Internationale d'Urologie (SIU). A total of 2494 urologists from 76 countries responded, including 1161 (46.6%) urologists in an academic setting, 719 (28.8%) in a private practice, and 614 (24.6%) in the public sector. The largest proportion (1074 (43.1%)) were from Europe, with the remainder from East/Southeast Asia (441 (17.7%)), West/Southwest Asia (386 (15.5%)), Africa (209 (8.4%)), South America (198 (7.9%)), and North America (186 (7.5%)). An analysis of differences in responses was carried out by region and practice setting. The results reveal significant restrictions in outpatient consultation and non-emergency surgery, with nonspecific efforts towards additional precautions for preventing the spread of COVID-19 during emergency surgery. These restrictions were less notable in East/Southeast Asia. Urologists often bear the decision-making responsibility regarding access to elective surgery (40.3%). Restriction of both outpatient clinics and non-emergency surgery is considerable worldwide but is lower in East/Southeast Asia. Measures to control the spread of COVID-19 during emergency surgery are common but not specific. The pandemic has had a profound impact on urology practice. There is an urgent need to provide improved guidance for this and future pandemics.