Surgical Triage and Timing for Patients With Coronavirus Disease: A Guidance Statement from The Society of Thoracic Surgeons

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Article, Peer-reviewed

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The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic continues to disrupt the provision of cardiac procedural services due to overwhelming interval surges in COVID-19 cases and the associated crisis of cardiac intervention deferment. Despite the availability of widespread testing, highly efficacious vaccines, and intensive public health efforts, the pandemic is entering its third year, where new severe acute respiratory syndrome-coronavirus-2 variants have increased the likelihood that patients scheduled for a cardiac intervention will contract COVID-19 in the perioperative period. The Society of Thoracic Surgeons (STS) Workforce on Critical Care, the STS Workforce on Adult Cardiac and Vascular Surgery, and the Canadian Society of Cardiac Surgeons have developed this document, endorsed by the STS and affirmed by the Society of Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions and the Canadian Association of Interventional Cardiology, to provide guidance for cardiac procedure deferment and intervention timing for preoperative patients diagnosed with COVID-19. This document is intended for the perioperative cardiac surgical team and outlines the present state of the pandemic, the impact of COVID-19 on intervention outcome, and offers a recommended algorithm for individualized cardiac procedure triage and timing.