Impact of COVID-19 on gastroenterology fellowship training: a multicenter analysis of endoscopy volumes.
Endosc Int Open
Background and study aims The COVID-19 pandemic has had a profound impact on gastroenterology training programs. We aimed to objectively evaluate procedural training volume and impact of COVID-19 on gastroenterology fellowship programs in the United States. Methods This was a retrospective, multicenter study. Procedure volume data on upper and lower endoscopies performed by gastroenterology fellows was abstracted directly from the electronic medical record. The study period was stratified into 2 time periods: Study Period 1, SP1 (03/15/2020 to 06/30/2020) and Study Period 2, SP2 (07/01/2020 to 12/15/2020). Procedure volumes during SP1 and SP2 were compared to Historic Period 1 (HP1) (03/15/2019 to 06/30/2019) and Historic Period 2 (HP2) (07/01/2019 to 12/15/2019) as historical reference. Results Data from 23 gastroenterology fellowship programs (total procedures = 127,958) with a median of 284 fellows (range 273-289; representing 17.8 % of all trainees in the United States) were collected. Compared to HP1, fellows performed 53.6 % less procedures in SP1 (total volume: 28,808 vs 13,378; mean 105.52 ± 71.94 vs 47.61 ± 41.43 per fellow; P < 0.0001). This reduction was significant across all three training years and for both lower and upper endoscopies ( P < 0.0001). However, the reduction in volume was more pronounced for lower endoscopy compared to upper endoscopy [59.03 % (95 % CI: 58.2-59.86) vs 48.75 % (95 % CI: 47.96-49.54); P < 0.0001]. The procedure volume in SP2 returned to near baseline of HP2 (total volume: 42,497 vs 43,275; mean 147.05 ± 96.36 vs 150.78 ± 99.67; P = 0.65). Conclusions Although there was a significant reduction in fellows' endoscopy volume in the initial stages of the pandemic, adaptive mechanisms have resulted in a return of procedure volume to near baseline without ongoing impact on endoscopy training.
Paleti S, Sobani ZA, McCarty TR, Gutta A, Gremida A, Shah R, Nutalapati V, Bazerbachi F, Jesudoss R, Amin S, Okwara C, Kathi PR, Ahmed A, Gessel L, Hung K, Masoud A, Yu J, Mony S, Akshintala V, Jamil L, Nasereddin T, Kochhar G, Vyas N, Saligram S, Garg R, Sandhu D, Benrajab K, Konjeti R, Agnihotri A, Trivedi H, Grunwald M, Mayer I, Mohanty A, Rustagi T. Impact of COVID-19 on gastroenterology fellowship training: a multicenter analysis of endoscopy volumes. Endosc Int Open. 2021 Sep 16;9(10):E1572-E1578. doi: 10.1055/a-1526-1419. PMID: 34540553; PMCID: PMC8445682.