Apheresis practice variation during the COVID-19 pandemic: Results of a survey

Yvette C. Tanhehco, Mohamed Alsammak, Vishesh Chhibber, Nnaemeka Ibeh, Yanhua Li, Laura D. Stephens, Daniel K. Noland, Ding Wen Wu, Nicole D. Zantek, Phillip J. DeChristopher, Marisa Claudia Saint Martin, Wen Lu, Gay Wehrli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: The COVID-19 pandemic affected healthcare delivery across all specialties including apheresis. To describe the changes in apheresis service practices that occurred during the pandemic, the American Society for Apheresis (ASFA) Apheresis Medicine Attending Physician Subcommittee conducted a survey study. Study Design and Methods: A 32-question survey was designed and distributed to 400 ASFA physician members on September 7, 2022. Attending physicians responded to questions about whether and how apheresis service practices changed during the COVID-19 pandemic compared with the time period prior to the pandemic in terms of: (1) procedure types and volumes, (2) patient consultation workflow, and (3) the use of telemedicine. Descriptive analyses were reported as number and frequency of responses. Results: The survey response rate was 13.8% (55/400). Of these respondents, 96.4% (53/55) were attending physicians. The majority of respondents (42/53, 79.2%) indicated that the types of procedures performed during COVID-19 compared to pre-pandemic did not change. Most frequently for apheresis procedure volume, respondents reported: no change in their monthly inpatient volume (21/47, 44.7%) and a decrease in their monthly outpatient volume (28/46, 60.9%). Prior to COVID-19, 75.0% (30/40) of respondents performed consultations at bedside for inpatients and 67.4% (29/43) performed consultations at bedside for outpatients. Bedside consultations decreased in both settings during the pandemic but were still most frequently performed by attending physicians. At the same time, the use of telemedicine increased for 15.4% of survey respondents during COVID-19. Conclusion: Some, but not all, respondents observed or made changes to their apheresis service during the COVID-19 pandemic. A subset of changes, such as increased utilization of telemedicine, may persist.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere22109
JournalJournal of clinical apheresis
Volume39
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2024

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2024 Wiley Periodicals LLC.

Keywords

  • COVID-19
  • apheresis physician
  • telemedicine
  • therapeutic apheresis

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article

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