Message From the President, David A. Spain, MD
Dear AAST Members,
First of all, I sincerely hope that all of you, and your loved ones, are staying healthy, especially our colleagues in New York City. Having seen firsthand what hepatitis did to many surgeons in the 70s and 80s before a vaccine was available and being a surgical resident during the emergence of HIV/AIDS, these truly are unprecedented times for most of us. And as usual, we as a profession remain at the very front line, ready to take care of all critically ill and injured patients. Few other physicians have experienced what we do regularly - making urgent treatment decisions with limited information, performing emergency life-saving procedures that may expose us to risk and managing multi-casualty events. Thus, it's not surprising that at many hospitals around the country, our AAST members are in active leadership roles during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Given the pace of events, it is very challenging to keep up with the latest recommendations. The AAST has developed a resource page (https://www.aast.org/covid-19-resources) where we are collecting links to resources, such as:
- Maintaining Trauma Center Access and Care during the COVID-19 Pandemic: Guidance Document for Trauma Medical Directors from the COT
- Webinar sponsored by multiple international societies in the current situation, new challenges, and treatments for COVID-19 in Italy, China, etc,
The Communications Committee under the leadership of Dr. Zarzaur is collating national guidelines and resources. In addition, they are actively reviewing institutional policies and procedures and will make them available as appropriate.
I have spoken with Dr. Bulger (chair of the COT) and Dr. Christmas (president of EAST). All three groups are committed to supporting surgeons on the front line by providing easy access to resources for the care of patients during the COVID pandemic. Thus, we will be actively monitoring information and regularly updating the website.
Finally, let me say how incredibly proud I am of all the Acute Care Surgeons out there who are stepping up to help take care of all patients during this pandemic in addition to our trauma, emergency surgery, and surgical critical care patients. We will get through this as we always have - working as a team to deliver the best evidence-based, protocol-driven care we can.
Please be safe and take care of yourself, your family and each other.
David A. Spain, MD, FACS
David L. Gregg, MD Professor/Chief of Acute Care Surgery
Associate Division Chief of General Surgery
General Surgery Program Director
Department of Surgery, Stanford University
Trauma Medical Director, Stanford Healthcare
300 Pasteur Dr, H-3641
Stanford, CA 94305