June 23, 2020

Survey finds patient fears may limit return to surgery

By: Judy Mathias

Editor's Note

As hospitals begin ramping up elective surgical procedures, healthcare leaders face significant challenges, the June 23 Becker’s Hospital Review reports.

A market research survey by Lumeon (Boston) found that the top operational concern for healthcare leaders is making sure patients feel safe to schedule and come into hospitals for surgical procedures.

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Of 102 respondents:

  • 68% believe patient fear will delay or limit demand for surgery, with the delays extending for at least 6 months, and the effect of this likely to be exhibited in cancellations
  • 87% of hospitals had a surgery cancellation rate of less than 10% before the pandemic, but only 34% believe they will be able to maintain that level, and nearly 15% anticipate cancellation rates topping 25%
  • 71% believe there is a significant opportunity to fast track patients preoperatively using virtual care, like video consultations.

Concerns about patient fear was followed by concerns about screening patients for COVID-19 and operational challenges as a result of having reserved separate ORs and ICUs for COVID-19 patients.


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