Outpatient Surgery Magazine

Answering the Call - May 2020 - Subscribe to Outpatient Surgery Magazine

Outpatient Surgery Magazine, providing current information on Surgical Services, Surgical Facility Administration, Outpatient Surgery News and Trends, OR Excellence and more.

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9 8 • O U T PA T I E N T S U R G E R Y M A G A Z I N E • M A Y 2 0 2 0 N asal decoloniza- tion should be part of a multi- faceted approach to stop the transmission of the new coronavirus in sur- gical settings and to pro- tect staff and patients from infection. Elective surgeries will be performed again, and when they are you'll be faced with the reality of having to treat every patient as a carrier of COVID-19 due to the virus's prevalence within the community, it's high asymptomatic rate — 40% to 50% of infected patients don't show symptoms — and testing effectiveness that's somewhat limited because the viral load is initially higher in the nasal or oral pharynx before moving to the lower respiratory tract after seven days of infection. We're also dealing with an elevated transmis- sion pressure in health care due to the virus's widespread community- associated spread. For these reasons, it's best to treat the nares of every patient undergoing surgery. My colleagues and I have been studying the epidemiology of disease transmission in the perioperative space for 14 years by exploring various modes, vectors, methods and reservoirs of origin in how pathogenic infectious microorganisms move. The modeling we've done on disease transmission has been largely about the behavior of clinicians — it relates to compliance with basic preventative measures. Nasal Decolonization Helps Control COVID-19 Treating the nares should be part of efforts to limit transmission risks. Infection Prevention Randy W. Loftus, MD • THE NOSE HAS IT Patient decolonization aids in the prevention of perioperative viral spread.

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