Eur J Orthop Surg Traumatol. 2022 Sep 2:1-6. doi: 10.1007/s00590-022-03334-8. Online ahead of print.
PURPOSE: The unprecedented COVID-19 experience has posed severe challenges to the health care system and several of these are documented in orthopaedic surgery; however, although the pandemic has also brought positive changes, these have not been precisely documented. The purpose of this survey is to identify positive perceptions by orthopaedic surgeons at an international level.
METHODS: A cross-sectional, web-based survey inviting 120 orthopaedic surgeons was conducted in April 2020 querying about the positive lessons COVID-19 would teach us. From all responses, thematic codes were obtained and an exploratory thematic analysis was carried out to determine the prevalent themes.
RESULTS: A total of 100 responses (83% response rate) from a total of seven countries were received. The variety of responses received were grouped into 13 different thematic codes. The thematic analysis generated two major themes: “Virtual reorganization” and “Wellness and sustainability”. Fifty-four per cent of the participants reported positive changes in service reorganization and virtual consultation, whereas 30% replied with an increased feeling of well-being which overlapped with environmental benefits, including reduced paperwork, reduced travelling and increased quality time for family and reflection.
CONCLUSIONS: Despite the negative aspects of the pandemic, responders reported several positive changes particularly relating to service reorganization and personal well-being. This study prompts further larger scale research to unravel further detail in those positive aspects and strongly enhance our future orthopaedic practice.