Protection of nephrology health professionals during the COVID-19 pandemic? Proteccion de los profesionales sanitarios en nefrologia ante la pandemia por COVID-19
ABSTRACT: The COVID-19 epidemic represents a special risk for kidney patients due to their comorbidities and advanced age, and the need for hemodialysis treatment in group rooms. It also represents a risk for professionals responsible for their attention. This manuscript contains a proposal for action to prevent infection of professionals in the Nephrology Services, one of the most valuable assets at the present time.
Project description:The COVID-19 epidemic represents a special risk for kidney patients due to their comorbidities and advanced age, and the need for hemodialysis treatment in group rooms. It also represents a risk for professionals responsible for their attention. This manuscript contains a proposal for action to prevent infection of professionals in the Nephrology Services, one of the most valuable assets at the present time.
Project description:<h4>Objective</h4> Minimize exposure to the SARS-CoV-2, reduce the chances of cross-transmission between patients and healthcare personnel, and prevent the development of postoperative complications from the management of patients with eye diseases during the 2019 coronavirus disease pandemic (COVID-19). <h4>Methods</h4> COVID-19 literature review and consensus establishment between different Spanish ophthalmology societies in order to provide guidelines and recommendations of maximum resources primarily conditioned by the state of alert, confinement and social distancing that occurs in Spain since March 16, 2020. <h4>Results</h4> The recommendations will promote the adoption of action and protection measures for eye care in outpatient clinics, surgical areas and hospitalization, for unconfirmed (asymptomatic and symptomatic) and confirmed COVID-19 patients. Measures must be adapted to the circumstances and availability of personal protective equipment in each of the centers and Autonomous Communities, which will be updated according to the pandemic phases and the measures adopted by the Spanish Government. <h4>Conclusions</h4> During the COVID-19 pandemic, attention to the potential health risks to the population caused by coronavirus should prevail over the possible progression of the common eye diseases. Ophthalmologists and other eye care professionals must assume a possible progression of these diseases due to the impossibility of adequate patient follow-up.
Project description:Purpose:To collate best practice recommendations on the management of patients receiving in-center hemodialysis during the COVID-19 pandemic, based on published reports and current public health advice, while considering ethical principles and the unique circumstances of Canadian hemodialysis units across the country. Sources of information:The workgroup members used Internet search engines to retrieve documents from provincial and local hemodialysis programs; provincial public health agencies; the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; webinars and slides from other kidney agencies; and nonreviewed preprints. PubMed was used to search for peer-reviewed published articles. Informal input was sought from knowledge users during a webinar. Methods:Challenges in the care of hemodialysis patients during the COVID-19 pandemic were highlighted within the Canadian Senior Renal Leaders Forum discussion group. The Canadian Society of Nephrology (CSN) developed the COVID-19 rapid response team (RRT) to address these challenges. They identified a pan-Canadian team of clinicians and administrators with expertise in hemodialysis to form the workgroup. One lead was chosen who drafted the initial document. Members of the workgroup reviewed and discussed all recommendations in detail during 2 virtual meetings on April 7 and April 9. Disagreements were resolved by consensus. The document was reviewed by the CSN COVID-19 RRT, an ethicist, an infection control expert, a community nephrologist, and a patient partner. Content was presented during an interactive webinar on April 11, 2020 attended by 269 kidney health professionals, and the webinar and first draft of the document were posted online. Final revisions were made based on feedback received until April 13, 2020. CJKHD editors reviewed the parallel process peer review and edited the manuscript for clarity. Key findings:Recommendations were made under the following themes: (1) Identification of patients with COVID-19 in the dialysis unit, (2) hemodialysis of patients with confirmed COVID-19, (3) hemodialysis of patients not yet known to have COVID-19, (4) visitors; (5) testing for COVID-19 in the dialysis unit; (6) resuscitation, (6) routine hemodialysis care, (7) hemodialysis care under fixed dialysis resources. Limitations:Because of limitations of time and resources, and the large number of questions, formal systematic review was not undertaken. The recommendations are based on expert opinion and subject to bias. The parallel review process that was created may not be as robust as the standard peer review process. Implications:We hope that these recommendations provide guidance for dialysis unit directors, clinicians, and administrators on how to limit risk from infection and adverse outcomes, while providing necessary dialysis care in a setting of finite resources. We also identify a number of resource allocation priorities, which we hope will inform decisions at provincial funding agencies.
Project description:BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES:Medical specialty and subspecialty fellowship programs administer subject-specific in-training examinations to provide feedback about level of medical knowledge to fellows preparing for subsequent board certification. This study evaluated the association between the American Society of Nephrology In-Training Examination and the American Board of Internal Medicine Nephrology Certification Examination in terms of scores and passing status. DESIGN, SETTING, PARTICIPANTS, & MEASUREMENTS:The study included 1684 nephrology fellows who completed the American Society of Nephrology In-Training Examination in their second year of fellowship training between 2009 and 2014. Regression analysis examined the association between In-Training Examination and first-time Nephrology Certification Examination scores as well as passing status relative to other standardized assessments. RESULTS:This cohort included primarily men (62%) and international medical school graduates (62%), and fellows had an average age of 32 years old at the time of first completing the Nephrology Certification Examination. An overwhelming majority (89%) passed the Nephrology Certification on their first attempt. In-Training Examination scores showed the strongest association with first-time Nephrology Certification Examination scores, accounting for approximately 50% of the total explained variance in the model. Each SD increase in In-Training Examination scores was associated with a difference of 30 U (95% confidence interval, 27 to 33) in certification performance. In-Training Examination scores also were significantly associated with passing status on the Nephrology Certification Examination on the first attempt (odds ratio, 3.46 per SD difference in the In-Training Examination; 95% confidence interval, 2.68 to 4.54). An In-Training Examination threshold of 375, approximately 1 SD below the mean, yielded a positive predictive value of 0.92 and a negative predictive value of 0.50. CONCLUSIONS:American Society of Nephrology In-Training Examination performance is significantly associated with American Board of Internal Medicine Nephrology Certification Examination score and passing status.
Project description:Background and objective There is a shortage of supplies for the protection of professionals during the COVID-19 pandemic. 3D printing offers the possibility to compensate for the production of some of the equipment needed. The objective is to describe the role of 3D printing in a health service during the COVID-19 pandemic, with an emphasis on the process to develop a final product ready to be implemented in the clinical environment. Methods A working group was formed between the healthcare administration, clinicians and other public and private institutions in Cantabria, Spain coordinated by the Valdecilla Virtual Hospital. The process included receiving the printing proposals, learning about the printing resources in the region, selecting the devices, creating a team for each project, prototyping, evaluation and redesign, manufacturing, assembly and distribution. Results The following supplies are produced: 1) devices that help protect providers: face protection screens (2400 units), personalized accessories for photophores (20 units) and ear-protection forks for face-masks (1200 units); 2) products related to the ventilation of infected patients: connectors for non-invasive ventilation systems; and 3) oral and nasopharyngeal swabs (7500 units) for the identification of coronavirus carriers with the aim of designing action protocols in clinical areas. Conclusions 3D printing is a valid resource for the production of protective material for professionals whose supply is reduced during a pandemic.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is increasing worldwide, and the majority of the CKD burden is in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). However, there is wide variability in global access to kidney care therapies such as dialysis and kidney transplantation. The challenges health professionals experience while providing kidney care in LMICs have not been well described. The goal of this study is to elicit health professionals' perceptions of providing kidney care in a resource-constrained environment, strategies for dealing with resource limitations, and suggestions for improving kidney care in Guatemala. METHODS:Semi-structured interviews were performed with 21 health professionals recruited through convenience sampling at the largest public nephrology center in Guatemala. Health professionals included administrators, physicians, nurses, technicians, nutritionists, psychologists, laboratory personnel, and social workers. Interviews were recorded and transcribed in Spanish. Qualitative data from interviews were analyzed in NVivo using an inductive approach, allowing dominant themes to emerge from interview transcriptions. RESULTS:Health professionals most frequently described challenges in providing high-quality care due to resource limitations. Reducing the frequency of hemodialysis, encouraging patients to opt for peritoneal dialysis rather than hemodialysis, and allocating resources based on clinical acuity were common strategies for reconciling high demand and limited resources. Providers experienced significant emotional challenges related to high patient volume and difficult decisions on resource allocation, leading to burnout and moral distress. To improve care, respondents suggested increased budgets for equipment and personnel, investments in preventative services, and decentralization of services. CONCLUSIONS:Health professionals at the largest public nephrology center in Guatemala described multiple strategies to meet the rising demand for renal replacement therapy. Due to systems-level limitations, health professionals faced difficult choices on the stewardship of resources that are linked to sentiments of burnout and moral distress. This study offers important lessons in Guatemala and other countries seeking to build capacity to scale-up kidney care.
Project description:BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Renal disease disproportionately affects African-American patients. Trust has been implicated as an important factor in patient outcomes. Higher levels of trust and better interpersonal care have been reported when race of patient and physician are concordant. The purpose of this analysis was to examine trends in the racial background of U.S. medical school graduates, internal medicine residents, nephrology fellows, and patients with ESRD. DESIGN, SETTING, PARTICIPANTS, & MEASUREMENTS: Data for medical school graduates were obtained from the Association of American Medical Colleges and data for internal medicine and nephrology trainees from GME Track. ESRD data were obtained from U.S. Renal Data System (USRDS) annual reports. RESULTS: A significant disparity continues to exist between the proportional race makeup of African-American nephrology fellows (3.8%) and ESRD patients (32%). The low numbers of African-American nephrology fellows, and consequently new nephrologists, in light of the increase in ESRD patients has important implications for patient-centered nephrology care. CONCLUSIONS: Efforts are needed to increase minority recruitment into nephrology training programs, to more closely balance the racial background of trainees and patients in hopes of fostering improved trust between ESRD caregivers and patients, increasing access to care, alleviating ESRD health care disparities, and improving patient care.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Between February and April 2020, Italy experienced an overwhelming growth of the COVID-19 pandemic. Little is known, at the country level, where and how patients on renal replacement therapy (RRT) have been mostly affected. METHODS:Survey of the network of Nephrology centers using a simplified 17 items electronic questionnaire designed by Italian Society of Nephrology COVID-19 Research Group. We used spatial epidemiology and geographical information systems to map SARS-CoV-2 spread among RRT patients in Italy. RESULTS:On April 9th 2020, all nephrology centers (n?=?454) listed in the DialMap database were invited to complete the electronic questionnaire. Within 11 days on average, 365 centers responded (80.4% response rate; 2.3% margin of error) totaling 60,441 RRT patients. The surveyed RRT population included 30,821 hemodialysis (HD), 4139 peritoneal dialysis (PD), and 25,481 transplanted (Tx) patients respectively. The proportion of SARS-CoV-2 positive RRT patients in Italy was 2.26% (95% CI 2.14-2.39) with significant differences according to treatment modality (p?<?0.001). The proportion of patients positive for SARS-CoV-2 was significantly higher in HD (3.55% [95% CI 3.34-3.76]) than PD (1.38% [95% CI 1.04-1.78] and Tx (0.86% [95% CI 0.75-0.98]) (p?<?0.001), with substantial heterogeneity across regions and along the latitude gradient (p?<?0.001). In RRT patients the highest rate was in the north-west (4.39% [95% CI 4.11-4.68], followed by the north-east (IR 2.06% [1.79-2.36]), the center (0.91% [0.75-1.09]), the main islands (0.67% [0.47-0.93]), and the south (0.59% [0.45-0.75]. During the COVID-19 pandemic, among SARS-Cov-2 positive RRT patients the fatality rate was 32.8%, as compared to 13.3% observed in the Italian population as of April 23rd. CONCLUSIONS:A substantial proportion of the 60,441 surveyed RRT patients in Italy were SARS-Cov-2 positive and subsequently died during the exponential phase of COVID-19 pandemic. Infection risk and rates seems to differ substantially across regions, along geographical latitude, and by treatment modality.
Project description:Advances in medical care and biomedical research depend on the participation of human subjects. Poor patient enrollment in research has limited past clinical and translational research endeavors in nephrology. Simultaneously, patients and their caregivers are seeking better diagnostic, monitoring, and therapeutic approaches to improve or restore kidney and overall health. This manuscript will discuss a framework and strategies to optimize patient enrollment within nephrology research and provide examples of success from existing nephrology research programs.
Project description:Educational needs assessments for nephrology fellowship training are limited. This study assessed fellows' perceptions of current educational needs and interest in novel modalities that may improve their educational experience and quantified educational resources used by programs and fellows. We distributed a seven-question electronic survey to all United States-based fellows receiving complimentary American Society of Nephrology (ASN) membership at the end of the 2015-2016 academic year in conjunction with the ASN Nephrology Fellows Survey. One third (320 of 863; 37%) of fellows in Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education-accredited positions responded. Most respondents rated overall quality of teaching in fellowship as either "good" (37%) or "excellent" (44%), and most (55%) second-year fellows felt "fully prepared" for independent practice. Common educational resources used by fellows included UpToDate, Journal of the American Society of Nephrology/Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology, and Nephrology Self-Assessment Program; others-including ASN's online curricula-were used less often. Fellows indicated interest in additional instruction in several core topics, including home dialysis modalities, ultrasonography, and pathology. Respondents strongly supported interventions to improve pathology instruction and increase time for physiology and clinical review. In conclusion, current nephrology fellows perceive several gaps in training. Innovation in education and training is needed to better prepare future nephrologists for the growing challenges of kidney care.