The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has put a substantial burden on the Italian healthcare system, resulting in the restructuring of hospitals to care for COVID-19 patients. However, this has likely impacted access to care for patients experiencing other conditions. We aimed to quantify the impact of COVID-19 on access to care for patients with urgent/emergent urological conditions throughout Italy. Materials and Methods: A questionnaire was sent to 33 urological units in the AGILE consortium, asking clinicians to report on the number of urgent/emergent urological patients seen and/or undergoing surgery over a 3-week period during the peak of the COVID-19 outbreak and a reference week prior to the outbreak. ANOVA and linear regression models were used to quantify these changes. Results: Data from 27 urological centres in Italy showed a decrease from 956 patients/week seen just prior to the outbreak to 291 patients/week seen by the end of the study period. There was a difference in the number of patients with urgent/emergent urological disease seen within/during the different weeks (all p values < 0.05). A significant decrease in the number of patients presenting with haematuria, urinary retention, urinary tract infection, scrotal pain, renal colic, or trauma and urgent/emergent cases that required surgery was reported (all p values < 0.05). Conclusion: In Italy, during the COVID-19 outbreak there has been a decrease in patients seeking help for urgent/emergent urological conditions. Restructuring of hospitals and clinics is mandatory to cope with the COVID-19 pandemic; however, the healthcare system should continue to provide adequate levels of care also to patients with other conditions.

Urology in the Time of Coronavirus: Reduced Access to Urgent and Emergent Urological Care during the Coronavirus Disease 2019 Outbreak in Italy

Verze P.;
2020

Abstract

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has put a substantial burden on the Italian healthcare system, resulting in the restructuring of hospitals to care for COVID-19 patients. However, this has likely impacted access to care for patients experiencing other conditions. We aimed to quantify the impact of COVID-19 on access to care for patients with urgent/emergent urological conditions throughout Italy. Materials and Methods: A questionnaire was sent to 33 urological units in the AGILE consortium, asking clinicians to report on the number of urgent/emergent urological patients seen and/or undergoing surgery over a 3-week period during the peak of the COVID-19 outbreak and a reference week prior to the outbreak. ANOVA and linear regression models were used to quantify these changes. Results: Data from 27 urological centres in Italy showed a decrease from 956 patients/week seen just prior to the outbreak to 291 patients/week seen by the end of the study period. There was a difference in the number of patients with urgent/emergent urological disease seen within/during the different weeks (all p values < 0.05). A significant decrease in the number of patients presenting with haematuria, urinary retention, urinary tract infection, scrotal pain, renal colic, or trauma and urgent/emergent cases that required surgery was reported (all p values < 0.05). Conclusion: In Italy, during the COVID-19 outbreak there has been a decrease in patients seeking help for urgent/emergent urological conditions. Restructuring of hospitals and clinics is mandatory to cope with the COVID-19 pandemic; however, the healthcare system should continue to provide adequate levels of care also to patients with other conditions.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11386/4769582
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