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Title: Impact of COVID-19 on surgical exposure and training for general surgery trainees in Australia: a national audit.
Austin Authors: Tang, Patrick;Newton, Peter;Mori, Krinal 
Affiliation: Department of Surgery, Northern Health, Victoria, Australia.
Department of Surgery, Northern Health, Victoria, Australia.
Department of Surgery, Northern Health, Victoria, Australia.;Northern Clinical School, The University of Melbourne, Epping, Victoria, Australia.
Issue Date: 19-Dec-2023
Date: 2023
Publication information: ANZ Journal of Surgery 2023-12-19
Abstract: The COVID-19 pandemic has caused a major disruption in operative volumes over the last few years, which has directly impacted on surgical training. This study aims to quantify the impact of COVID-19 and the relevant restrictions on General Surgery trainees in Australia. Logbook data of General Surgery trainees from 2019 to 2021 was analysed and compared to assess the impact of COVID-19 on operative numbers and supervision levels during major operations. There was a statistically significant reduction in overall operative numbers in Australia, with a decrease of 2.0% in 2020 (IRR 0.980, 95% CI 0.973-0.986, P < 0.001) and 6.8% in 2021 (IRR 0.932, 95% CI 0.926-0.938, P < 0.001). Elective operations reduced by 6.6% in 2020 (IRR 0.934, 95% CI 0.927-0.942, P < 0.001) and 10.3% in 2021 (IRR 0.934, 95% CI 0.927-0.942, P < 0.001). Victoria and NT were the most affected jurisdictions; while hepatobiliary, trauma and surgical oncology were the most affected subspecialties. The proportion of overall primary operating has significantly decreased (41.8% vs. 40.2%, P < 0.001) between 2019 and 2020, and decreased further to 39.7% in 2021. The COVID-19 pandemic has had an overall negative impact on surgical training in General Surgery. Efforts should be directed at minimizing detraining of trainees and further disruptions to their training.
DOI: 10.1111/ans.18837
ORCID: 0000-0001-7504-1497
Journal: ANZ Journal of Surgery
PubMed URL: 38115547
ISSN: 1445-2197
Type: Journal Article
Subjects: COVID-19
general surgery
surgical education
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