Objectives: The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has drastically altered endoscopic practices. We initially reported the international impact of COVID-19 on pediatric endoscopic practice. This follow-up study aimed to assess changes 7 months following the initial survey to delineate practice change patterns as the pandemic evolved.
Methods: Pediatric gastroenterologists who responded to the initial survey were re-surveyed seven months later using Research Electronic Data Capture (REDCap). The survey recorded information on changes in pediatric endoscopic practice patterns, including COVID-19 screening and testing processes and personal protective equipment (PPE) utilization. Additionally, endoscopists' risk tolerance of COVID-19 transmission was evaluated.
Results: Seventy-five unique institutions from 21 countries completed surveys from the 145 initial responses (51.7% response rate). Procedural volumes increased at most institutions (70.7%) and most were performing previously postponed cases (90.7%). Ninety-seven percent of institutions were performing pre-endoscopy screening with 78.7% testing all patients. Many institutions (34.7%) have performed procedures on COVID-19 positive patients. There was significantly less PPE reuse (P < 0.05) and fewer institutions recommending full PPE for all endoscopies (43.2% vs 59.2%, P = 0.013). Overall, pediatric endoscopists' risk tolerance of COVID-19 transmission is low.
Conclusions: This is the first survey to highlight the evolution of pediatric endoscopic practices related to the COVID-19 pandemic, underscoring the need for ongoing pandemic-related guidance for pediatric endoscopic practice.
Copyright © 2022 by European Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition and North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition.