It is very likely that the infrastructure and resources of the health care system in most countries of the world will be strained by the spread of COVID-19 in the coming weeks, especially when it comes to caring for the most seriously ill patients.
While social distancing, crowd control and other techniques are being imposed in many countries to help flatten the curve of COVID-19 prevalence, it is also important to think ahead about the individuals who will nevertheless become infected.
We plastic surgeons, by nature, have a high percentage of patients whose operations and treatments are neither acute nor urgent, and these are what are known as elective procedures or treatments.
Our professional organisations have to recommend that we refrain from seeing non-urgent patients for the time being. It’s our duty to postpone such non-urgent elective surgery and treatment.
We have followed these recommendations and for this reason, after very careful consideration, we have to postpone your planned operation until the restrictions, official recommendations, no longer exist.
We are very sorry for the inconvenience to you but hope that you understand the goals: to save resources, which are needed urgently elsewhere, for example in intensive care and emergency medicine; to protect you as our patient; and to protect personnel.
In the times of COVID-19, even in well-organized health systems there are currently shortages and delivery difficulties of emergency drugs, antibiotics, protective gowns, masks, disinfectants and infusions worldwide. Quarantine measures or infections can also lead to bottlenecks for medical personnel.
For these reasons at this time we can only follow up on freshly operated patients, and patients with tumors or acute complications after operations, during our consultation hours, in order to be able to maintain the additional prescribed hygienic measures.
This is for our protection, but also especially for your own. Our highest priority is to protect you as our patient from unnecessary risk, and we need in addition to make sure that we as medical professionals are available to help in an emergency situation if required.
As responsible plastic surgeons, we hope to make our small contribution in this way, making scarce materials and medical staff available for emergencies.
We know exactly how much you have been preparing for the planned operation, maybe even looking forward to it, maybe taking a holiday, planning help and planning replacements at work, but we must follow the legal regulations, the recommendations and hope that these will help to stop the rapid spread of the virus and to fight the serious course of the disease worldwide.
We thank you again for your understanding and ask you to contact us for a new appointment. Please call us and let us try to find alternative dates for you as soon as possible.
Please stay safe and healthy