Minnesota patients anxiously waiting for surgery delayed by COVID-19

[Star Tribune, April 29, 2020]

Delays of nonessential surgeries in Minnesota have caused anxious waits for patients needing treatments that sound a lot more serious than the word “elective” might imply. The good news, doctors say, is a delay in the surge of COVID patients combined with an increase in testing capabilities is creating a chance to get more procedures done in the near term.

Getting through the backlog won’t be easy, though, since thousands of surgeries have been delayed already.

“We have a group of surgeons who are reviewing this on basically a daily basis, and it is really hard work,” said Dr. Tim Sielaff, chief medical officer at Allina Health, which operates 11 hospitals. “There’s a really significant gray area between ‘clearly it has to be done,’ and ‘clearly it doesn’t have to be done.’ ”

Read the full story online at www.startribune.com.

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Tim Sielaff, MD, PhD Chief Medical Officer Allina Health

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