Editor’s note: Media around the world, including social media, frequently report on American College of Surgeons (ACS) activities. Following are brief excerpts from news stories published from June through September 2019 that mention key ACS programs and initiatives, including research findings that appear in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons. To access the news items in their entirety, visit the online ACS Newsroom.
The elderly are getting complex surgeries. Often it doesn’t end well.
New York Times, June 7, 2019
“[Dr. Clifford Y. Ko, MD, MS, MSHS, FACS, FASCRS,] and Dr. Ronnie Rosenthal, [MD, FACS,] a surgeon and geriatrician at the Yale University School of Medicine, lead the American College of Surgeons’ Coalition for Quality in Geriatric Surgery.
As older people undergo more operations, the coalition has focused on the results. Perhaps unsurprisingly, older surgical patients often fare worse than younger ones.”
Doctors weigh in on why teen surviving shark attack is more than a miracle
ABC News, June 18, 2019
“Under the leadership of a trauma surgeon, Dr. Lenworth Jacobs, Jr., [ MD, MPH, FACS,] and the American College of Surgeons, a massive educational campaign has been undertaken. The focus of ‘Stop the Bleed’ is to train non-medical personnel to stop life-threatening hemorrhage. Integral to the training is early application of tourniquets. Our trauma center has trained over a thousand citizens in our trauma system, distributing hundreds of tourniquets.”
Hospitals look to cut opioids from surgery and beyond
Modern Healthcare, July 8, 2019
“Dr. John Daly, [MD, FACS,] co-chair of the Patient Education Committee at the American College of Surgeons, said the decision whether or not to prescribe opioids has to be weighed with an understanding of both the benefits and risks for the patient.
‘The benefit of opioids is that they do reduce pain,’ Daly said. ‘If a surgeon is going to utilize opioid-free surgery for some procedures then they would need to adopt other mechanisms for reducing pain, because it’s not the goal to simply eliminate opioids.’”
New standards aim to improve surgery for the oldest patients
Associated Press, July 19, 2019
“The American College of Surgeons launched a program Friday to encourage hospitals around the country to adopt 30 new standards to optimize surgery on patients who are 75 and older—information seniors and their families eventually will be able to use in choosing where to get care.”
Harvard, American College of Surgeons team up to improve health care quality
BenefitsPRO, July 24, 2019
“The American College of Surgeons and the Harvard Business School’s Institute for Strategy and Competitiveness are launching a program to quantify outcomes and costs of health care to improve both quality and the bottom line.
The new program, to be called THRIVE (Transforming Health Care Results by Investing in Value and Excellence), will be piloted with 10 to 15 hospitals and will focus on measuring the full cycle of care, including surgical, medical, behavioral and social elements, for three surgical conditions.”
The talk seniors need to have with doctors before surgery
Kaiser Health News, August 1, 2019
“Older patients, it turns out, often have different priorities than younger ones. More than longevity, in many cases, they value their ability to live independently and spend quality time with loved ones, according to Dr. Clifford Ko, professor of surgery at UCLA’s [University of California, Los Angeles] David Geffen School of Medicine.
Now new standards meant to improve surgical care for older adults have been endorsed by the American College of Surgeons. All older patients should have the opportunity to discuss their health goals and goals for the procedure, as well as their expectations for their recovery and their quality of life after surgery, according to the standards.”
Tap know-how to prevent firearm deaths
Seattle Times, August 14, 2019
“‘We know how to do this,’ says Dr. Eileen Bulger, [MD, FACS,] professor of surgery at the University of Washington School of Medicine and Chief of Trauma at Harborview [Seattle, WA].’ We have to tackle the big picture, the 40,000 people that die every year in the country from firearm violence. We can’t forget them.’
Society has to tackle the problem comprehensively, considering the role of people, equipment and environment, said Bulger, one of 22 co-authors of the American College of Surgeons’ consensus recommendations to reduce firearm injury, death and disability. Enlist gun owners as part of the solution and focus on the ‘vast middle ground’ between ideological extremes.”
A patient’s guide to surgery
U.S. News & World Report, September 11, 2019
“Surgery is classified in several ways, including by its magnitude, location in the body from head to toe and type of condition (such as orthopedic, neurologic or oncologic). Elective surgery can be planned in advance, whereas emergency surgery is needed right away for conditions like acute appendicitis. Complex conditions and procedures may require multiple surgical specialists.
The two basic types of surgery are major and minor, says Dr. John Daly, [MD, FACS,] a surgical oncologist at Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia[, PA,] and co-chair of the patient education committee for the American College of Surgeons.”
Opinion: A public health approach reduced deaths from car crashes. It can do the same for gun violence
Los Angeles Times, September 13, 2019
“In February, more than 45 of the largest medical, legal and injury-prevention organizations in the U.S. came together for an inaugural medical summit on firearm injury prevention. They reached a historic agreement to recognize firearm violence as a public health crisis in the U.S. and supported a comprehensive public health approach to solve it. The summit provided a road map of practical interventions to address the firearm injury crisis.”
You’ve survived cancer. What comes next?
The Wall Street Journal, September 15, 2019
“The health-care industry is facing increasing pressure to adapt to such success. In 2015, the Commission on Cancer, a program of the American College of Surgeons, began requiring that, as a condition of accreditation, hospitals provide patients with a survivorship-care plan.”