American College Of Surgeons - Inspiring Quality: Highest Standards, Better Outcomes

May 2018

How can trauma surgeons approach urgent decisions responsibly?
AMA Wire, May 17, 2018

"In the journal’s May podcast, experts David Hoyt, MD, executive director of the American College of Surgeons, and Karen Brasel, MD, professor of surgery at Oregon Health and Science University, discuss how the specialty has evolved over the years and how trauma surgeons can address the needs of changing communities."

Tales of hope and resilience in the aftermath of the Yonge Street van attack
Toronto Life, May 8, 2018

"I also work at the American College of Surgeons in Chicago, where I’m the medical director of the trauma quality programs. Because of all of the gun violence south of the border, there’s a lot of focus on disaster preparedness. I’ve listened to presentations from the doctors who responded to the Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando and from the San Antonio team. Clearly, their drills have paid off and made a difference in their ability to respond."

CDC Eyes Review of Gynecological Cancer Screens
Wall Street Journal, May 2, 2018

"Making a diagnosis 'really does affect your approach' to surgery, including whether it should be done, said David P. Winchester, the medical director of cancer programs at the American College of Surgeons, a scientific and educational association.

April 2018

Preparation helped Sunnybrook cope with its biggest-ever Code Orange
Toronto Star, April 24, 2018

"'We have joined the club unfortunately, but we were ready,' continued Nathens, who also serves as medical director of trauma quality programs of the American College of Surgeons. He was referring to recent mass casualty events in the United States, including last year’s shooting in Las Vegas and the 2016 shooting at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Fla."

A University Hospital surgeon hopes to unite people for a gun violence discussion
San Antonio Express-News, April 20, 2018

"A group of trauma surgeons — including a prominent one in San Antonio who helped treat victims of the mass shooting in Sutherland Springs — released a set of strategies Thursday that aim to reduce firearm-related injuries and deaths in the U.S.

The group hopes its new strategies, which will be published in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons in the coming months, will foster dialogue among the public and policymakers on both sides of the debate."

Suffolk honored its top doctor and a hometown native
Virginian-Pilot, April 17, 2018

"The plaques, which will be permanently displayed at both entrances of the building, note that Britt is a Henry Ford Professor and Edward J. Brickhouse Chairman at the Eastern Virginia Medical School, former president of the American College of Surgeons and first African American in the U.S. to receive an endowed chair in surgery at a major American medical school."

In Rural Areas, Recruiting and Retaining Doctors Are No Easy Tasks
American Association for Physician Leadership, April 12, 2018

"While some health care organizations entice newly minted physicians with loan payoffs, this recruitment strategy doesn’t necessarily result in retention beyond the obligation period.

Other factors, such as adequate call coverage and autonomy over one’s practice, tend to have a greater influence on loyalty, says Tyler Hughes, MD, FACS, founding chair of  the American College of Surgeons’ Advisory Council for Rural Surgery."

No Benefit From Adjuvant Therapy for Ampullary Tumors
Medscape, April 3, 2018

"In this study, Dhar and colleagues sought to better define the role of adjuvant therapy in the treatment of patients with resected ampullary tumors. Using the American College of Surgeons National Cancer Database, they identified 5298 patients with ampullary tumors, stage I through III, that had been surgically removed between 1998 and 2006."

March 2018

Trump wants to reduce opioid prescriptions by one-third. We can start now
STAT, March 30, 2018

"Research we conducted and published in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons shows how surgeons can determine an appropriate prescription. We found that many patients use less than one-third of the opioids prescribed to them, allowing unused medications to sit in a bathroom cabinet or be diverted or stolen for illicit use."

Burn Deaths Down From 1989 to 2017 in the United States
Physician's Weekly, March 15, 2018

"Burn injury survival has dramatically increased over the past 30 years, according to a study published online March 9 in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons."

Everyone can learn hemorrhage control on ‘National Stop the Bleed Day’
Washington Post, March 7, 2018

"Surgeons developed a training course for people with no medical background, and the course was offered by volunteer instructors. The American College of Surgeons estimates that about 120,000 people have taken a Stop the Bleed course, but one group of veterans thought more people should be exposed to the life-saving training."

February 2018

PA Leads National Stop the Bleed Day
AAPA, February 28, 2018

"Along with making recommendations that the police help stop bleeding if necessary and that EMS teams arrive on the scene sooner to provide care, it was found that the public can become actively involved with preventing death from uncontrollable bleeding. 'The reality is that for the first five or 10 minutes [after a trauma injury], the person who is going to save you is the person right beside you,' Jacobs says."

Americans should have access to bleed control training
The Hill, February 13, 2018

"In October 2015, the White House and the American College of Surgeons launched Stop the Bleed®, a program that provides individuals with the education and training they need to stop blood loss and save lives. The program was developed by the Hartford Consensus to Enhance Survival in Intentional Mass Casualty Events in April 2013, just a few months after the active shooter tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Just like CPR classes teach bystanders to assist people in cardiac arrest, a brief 20-30 minute Stop the Bleed® class can teach anyone how to stop excessive bleeding. After calling 911, a person losing blood is still in grave danger. Stop the Bleed® classes help bystanders act decisively and safely to save lives."

Older patients recover from surgery faster if they 'train' for it
CNBC, February 11, 2018

"'Prep is as important if not more important than the surgery itself,' said Dr. Ronnie Rosenthal, chair of the American College of Surgeons Geriatric Surgery Task Force."

'Striking' survival benefit with surgery for esophageal cancer
M.D./alert, February 1, 2018

"Using the National Cancer Database, the Weill Cornell team identified 12,298 patients with esophageal cancer including 708 (6%) patients who were advised to have surgery but declined, opting instead for definitive chemoradiation (41%), sequential chemotherapy/radiation (36%), radiation and/or chemotherapy alone (8%), or to forgo any treatment (15%)."

January 2018

Health Tip: Select the Right Cancer Team
U.S. News & World Report, January 31, 2018

"Consult online resources, such as the American College of Surgeons' Commission on Cancer, the U.S. National Cancer Institute and the Children's Oncology Group."

Airmen learn how to ‘stop the bleed, save a life’
Edwards Air Force Base, January 30, 2018

"Mostly non-clinical 412th MDG staff learned how to take action and stop a victim’s bleeding by listening during a short class and then practicing how to apply tourniquets and gauze to dummies and mock wounds. Simple techniques such as applying pressure, stuffing clean cloths into wounds and applying tourniquets could mean the difference between life and death according to the instructors.

Motivated by the 2012 Sandy Hook school shooting in Connecticut and multiple tragedies that occurred in the ensuing years, the American College of Surgeons convened the Hartford Consensus to bring together leaders from law enforcement, the federal government and the medical community to improve survivability from manmade or natural mass casualty events. Stop the Bleed, Save a Life came about to educate the public about the importance of bleeding control."

A Push To Get Older Adults In Better Shape For Surgery
Kaiser Health News, January 25, 2018

"In that vein, next year the American College of Surgeons (ACS) plans to launch a national effort to improve surgical care for seniors, after defining a broad array of standards that hospitals should meet. The goal is to promote and recognize 'centers of excellence in geriatric surgery' across the U.S., said Dr. Ronnie Rosenthal, chair of ACS’ geriatric surgery task force."

Smartphone app allows doctors, nurses to remotely monitor wound healing
United Press International, January 22, 2018

"The healing of postoperative surgical wounds can be effectively monitored with a new smartphone app, new research indicates.

The app, called WoundCheck, can be used to send digital images of a post-surgical wound with a short patient-administered questionnaire to monitoring nurses and could help reduce the need for post-surgical patient readmission, researchers report in a study published in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons."

'Stop the Bleed' classes come in response to mass shootings
The Free Lance-Star, January 18, 2018

"King, along with Amy Gulick, trauma program manager, and Dr. Corey Wright, trauma surgeon, on Tuesday sponsored the first class in the region on 'Stop the Bleed.' The nationwide initiative is led by the American College of Surgeons and stresses that first-responders and police officers, government workers and citizens alike, should be trained on how to handle massive bleeding—whether it’s from a shooting, act of terrorism, farming accident or household injury."

Interview with Eileen Bulger, MD, new chair of the ACS Committee on Trauma
Trauma System News, January 11, 2018

"Dr. Bulger is the chief of trauma at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, where she directs both the adult and pediatric trauma programs. As the 20th chair of the COT, she brings a diverse background in patient care, injury research and trauma system leadership.

Trauma System News recently talked to Dr. Bulger about the future directions of the COT and what she hopes to accomplish during her term."

Many women uninformed about breast cancer surgery options
Business Insider, January 10, 2018

"Women with breast cancer often feel rushed to make a decision about surgery, and some of them might benefit from more time and better educational materials to inform their treatment choices, two recent studies suggest."

Minimizing OR Noise and Distractions
OR Today, January 1, 2018

"A study published in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons in 2013 was the first to demonstrate the patient and surgical safety risks posed by ambient background noise in the OR.

'The operating room is a very fast-paced, high-demand, all senses running on all cylinders type of environment,' stated study coauthor Matthew Bush, MD, assistant professor of surgery at the University of Kentucky Medical Center, upon the study’s publication."

December 2017

13 best physicians of 2017, as named by Medscape
Becker's Hospital Review, December 21, 2017

"Timothy Chuter, DM. Chuter was honored with the 2017 Jacobson Innovation Award from the American College of Surgeons for his work in the development of endovascular aneurysm repair."

Too Many Older Patients Get Cancer Screenings
New York Times, December 19, 2017

"A variety of medical specialties — from the American College of Surgeons to the Society of General Internal Medicine — have advised doctors against screening patients with limited time left. For example, the American Cancer Society recommends prostate and breast cancer screenings only in patients expected to live 10 years or more."

If We’re Not Going To Stop Mass Shootings, These Doctors Want To Teach Civilians How To Save Lives
Huffington Post, December 13, 2017

"Jacobs took his concerns to the American College of Surgeons, which established a committee to create a national policy on enhancing 'survivablily' for mass shootings and other high-casualty events. At the committee’s first meeting in April 2013, members agreed that stopping blood loss as fast as possible and quickly transporting the wounded to a hospital was critical to saving lives in mass-casualty shootings. No one, they believed, should die from uncontrolled bleeding."

Leaving the hospital with less pain medication
Foster's Daily Democrat, December 3, 2017

"A report set to be released in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons by a Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center doctor supports the idea that too many opioids are prescribed for patients, and shows that far fewer can be used, reducing the stream of prescribed narcotics by 40 percent."

November 2017

More and More Americans Are Learning Basic First Aid for Gunshot Wounds
Slate, November 30, 2017

"These sorts of lessons have been gathering steam for years. In the wake of the Sandy Hook shootings in December 2012, the American College of Surgeons pulled together first-response experts from law enforcement, the medical community, and the military. Their recommendations, known as the Hartford Consensus, stemmed from the realization that injuries from mass shootings are similar to those found in combat. The resulting five-point response plan was based in part on military trauma guidelines and led to the 'Stop the Bleed' campaign, launched by the White House in 2015, to 'encourage bystanders to become trained, equipped, and empowered to help in a bleeding emergency before professional help arrives.'"

Rural Unintentional Injuries: They’re Not Accidents – They’re Preventable
RHIhub, November 28, 2017

"A recent CDC MMWR Rural Health Series report reviewed 5 rural categories of potentially preventable deaths. The categories included heart disease, stroke, chronic lower respiratory disease and cancer. In the 5th category – unintentional injuries – a significant disparity is highlighted: the rural death rate is 50% greater than the urban rate. The report goes on to suggest that the number one cause contributing to this disparity is motor vehicle trauma. Dr. Richard Sidwell, a Des Moines, Iowa trauma surgeon and chair of the American College of Surgeons Rural Trauma Subcommittee, said no database makes those rural motor vehicle trauma statistics look better."

October 2017

Belly Fat Widens Odds of Emergency Surgery Troubles
Health, October 30, 2017

“Excess belly fat dramatically increases the risk of complications and death after emergency surgery, a new study finds.

The research included more than 600 patients who had emergency surgery and underwent CT scans of the abdomen and pelvis before surgery. These scans were used to calculate waist-to-hip ratios, a measure of belly fat. A healthy ratio should not exceed .90 in men and .85 in women, according to the World Health Organization.”

Treating Appendicitis Without Surgery: Fears Raised
Medscape, October 27, 2017

“By managing older, sicker patients' appendicitis without surgery, US physicians may be increasing their risk for death by a slight but statistically significant degree, data suggest.

‘Mortality, we were surprised to find, was significantly higher in the patients managed nonoperatively,’ said lead author Isaiah Turnbull, MD, PhD, an assistant professor of surgery at Washington University in Saint Louis, Missouri.”

More than 80% of women with a high risk of breast cancer are not getting screened, study warns
Daily Mail, October 27, 2017

“Earlier MRI screening is recommended for women with genetic predisposition to breast cancer, or personal or family history of the disease.

But the study presented at the American College of Surgeons Clinical Congress in San Diego found the vast majority of these women choose not to get it.”

Checklist aims to help prevent surgical infections in Africa
Scope, October 26, 2017

“For the last year, Stanford surgery resident Jared Forrester, MD, has been living in Ethiopia, tackling one of surgery’s most troubling issues – how to prevent infections after an operation. Infection is always a risk with surgery, but those risks can be as much as five times higher among patients in low- and middle-income countries, Forrester said.”

Many high-risk women skip breast cancer screenings, even if they're free
United Press International, October 26, 2017

“Knowing they're at increased risk for breast cancer isn't enough to persuade many women to get MRI screenings -- even if they're free.

Researchers studied more than 1,000 women in a U.S. military health system who had a 20 percent or greater lifetime risk of breast cancer due to genetics or personal or family history.”

Vegas doctors share shooting experiences at San Diego conference
San Diego Union-Tribune, October 25, 2017

"'Many people left the scene on foot and started to wander. They wandered until they found an acute (care hospital).' Fildes said, during a Tuesday morning session at the American College of Surgeon’s 2017 Clinical Congress."

Acoustic gunshot sensors help speed treatment of shooting victims
Yahoo! Finance, October 25, 2017

“Acoustic gunshot sensors have been pinpointing shooting scenes and victims for years. The tech can be found in around 90 US cities in total. Meanwhile, the American military has been using it to track down the source of gunshots on the battlefield since 2011. But, the effectiveness of the sensors in saving the lives of ordinary citizens has never been quantified. That's all changing, courtesy of a new study by surgeons at the University of California, San Francisco-East Bay. The key finding from the analysis of shooting victims (identified through the sensors) is that the tech is potentially beneficial for those who have suffered serious injuries.”

Gunshot Sensors Improve Odds for Shooting Victims
Philadelphia Inquirer, October 24, 2017

“Gunshot sensors may help speed treatment of shooting victims and potentially improve outcomes for those with the most serious injuries, a new study suggests.

About 90 U.S. cities have installed the sensors to help pinpoint shooting scenes and find victims. Fewer than 20 percent of shots fired are reported to police, according to the researchers.”

Surgery Process Maps May Reduce Infection Risks in Low Resource Settings
Medscape, October 24, 2017

“Process maps can reduce the risk for perioperative infection in low-income countries by pinpointing barriers to good procedures, researchers say.

A process map implemented at a pilot site in Jimma, Ethiopia, significantly improved such measures as hand-washing and the timing of prophylactic antibiotics, said Jared Forrester, MD, a surgical fellow at Stanford Health Care in Palo Alto, California. ‘This can be a powerful tool,’ he said.”

Giving antibiotics prior to low-risk surgery may prevent resistance
United Press International, October 10, 2017

"The study, published today in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons, found patients had the same risk of developing an antibiotic-resistant infection regardless of prophylactic treatment with antibiotics -- roughly 47 percent of patients with an antibiotic-resistant infection had no antibiotic prophylaxis, while 49 percent of patients with an infection received prophylaxis."

September 2017

Bariatric surgeries helps hundreds lose weight
Seattle Times, September 24, 2017

"Accreditation is awarded to a bariatric surgical center only after a thorough review process, during which the institution must prove it maintains high practice standards and provides the physical and human resources needed to meet patient needs. To demonstrate ongoing compliance, accredited centers report patient outcomes to a national database maintained by the Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program."

Study: Ambulance ride may lower survival chance for some injuries
United Press International, September 20, 2017

"'Unlike CPR and defibrillation for heart attacks, the type of damage done in penetrating trauma often can't be reversed in a prehospital setting,' said Dr. Michael Wandling, an American College of Surgeons Clinical Scholar in Residence and general surgery resident at the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, said in a press release. 'This study supports other studies that prehospital interventions can actually result in less favorable outcomes for certain types of injuries.'"

How the Trump administration is reshaping health care — without Congress
Politico, September 13, 2017

"'We have been shooting for the moon, just bringing up every possible issue we think they have the ability to change,' said Vinita Ollapally, manager of regulatory affairs for the American College of Surgeons. 'This is the first time that any administration has seemed to be so focused on regulatory relief.'"

What should doctors and nurses do when a shooter is in the hospital?
Reuters, September 6, 2017

"'The public’s belief that hospitals are at lower risk might be grounded in the perception of hospitals as sanctuaries of caring and healing,' study co-authors Dr. Lenworth Jacobs and Karyl Burns of Hartford Hospital in Connecticut write in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons."

August 2017

Suffolk native to lead health care study
Suffolk News-Herald, August 31, 2017

"Britt, who now is the chair and professor of surgery at Eastern Virginia Medical School, will lead the historic effort by the American College of Surgeons to confront the problem. A $2.5 million grant from the National Institutes of Health will fund research into why disparities exist so that these disparities can be mitigated."

Norfolk surgeon will head $2.5M national study looking into disparities in health care
Virginian-Pilot, August 25, 2017

"The surgeon, now 66, just landed the grant of a lifetime to study health care disparities in surgery patients across the country.

He’ll be the principal investigator of an American College of Surgeons study funded by a $2.5 million grant from the National Institutes of Health, considered the gold standard of research dollars."

3 Ways Virtual Reality Is Transforming Medical Care
NBC News, August 22, 2017

"'We are seeing more and more of this incorporated faster than ever before,' said Dr. Ajit Sachdeva, Director of Education with the American College of Surgeons. 'VR has reached a tipping point in medicine.'"

Why U.S.-Trained Surgeons Often Aren't Ready For Humanitarian Work Abroad
NPR, August 15, 2017

"Other programs to help train volunteer surgeons for humanitarian missions, according to the World Journal of Surgery paper, include the American College of Surgeons' annual training program called Operation Giving Back, directed by Dr. Girma Tefera."

July 2017

'Nipple-Sparing' Mastectomies Don't Raise Odds of Cancer's Return: Study
U.S. News & World Report, July 19, 2017

"'Our study, which has one of the longest reported follow-ups after therapeutic nipple-sparing mastectomy in the United States, provides additional support that it's safe to leave the nipple intact during mastectomy with only a few exceptions,' [Barbara L. Smith, MD, PhD, FACS,] said in a news release from the Journal of the American College of Surgeons. It published the findings online July 17."

Same-day discharge after uncomplicated appendectomy in kids safe: study
M.D./alert, July 12, 2017

"To see if this is also the case in children, they did a retrospective cohort study using the American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program–Pediatric database, which provides 'high-quality' surgical outcomes data from more than 80 participating U.S. hospitals."

Postoperative Care With Online Portals
Physician's Weekly, July 11, 2017

"For a study published in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons, Dr. Kummerow Broman and colleagues evaluated patient and surgeon acceptance of online postoperative care after elective general surgical operations. The prospective pilot study involved 50 patients and compared online and in-person postoperative visits. Study enrollment and activities were completed over a 6 month period. Patients in the analysis underwent elective laparoscopic cholecystectomy, laparoscopic ventral hernia repair, umbilical hernia repair, or inguinal hernia repair, which was carried out by one of five surgeons."

June 2017

What are the chances of surviving 25-foot fall?
USA Today, June 26, 2017

"Falls from more than 20 feet usually result in a trip to the emergency room, but even low-level falls can cause serious head injuries, according to the American College of Surgeons."

Proto Magazine, June 13, 2017

"One way to lift up smaller communities may be to include them in a national response network, says Ronald Stewart, chair of the department of surgery at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio and head of the committee on trauma for the American College of Surgeons. He believes the nation needs a plan for communication and cooperation among all emergency medical personnel and nurses, emergency room physicians, trauma surgeons and trauma centers."

May 2017

Surgeons on board with teaching public to stop bleeding in emergencies
Reuters, May 18, 2017

"After the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut in 2012, the American College of Surgeons created the Joint Committee to Create a National Policy to Enhance Survivability from Mass Casualty Shooting Events. Following the Boston Marathon bombing in 2013, the committee expanded their focus to all mass casualty events, as well as everyday events that result in severe bleeding, such as car accidents or kitchen knife mishaps."

Not All Hospitals Equal When It Comes to Pancreatic Cancer Care
U.S. News & World Report, May 8, 2017

"When it comes to treating pancreatic cancer, where you have your surgery may have some impact on how long you live, according to a new study...The study findings were published online recently in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons."

April 2017

New tool used to more accurately predict parathyroid cancer return
United Press International, April 28, 2017

"Researchers at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center have created a new prognostic tool to predict the risk of recurrence of parathyroid cancer in patients...The study was published in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons."

Getting in Shape for Surgery
Healthline, April 24, 2017

"Now, the American College of Surgeons is ramping up a program called Strong for Surgery.

The idea is simple.

'In all other areas of life you show up prepared. You should do the same thing for surgery' said Dr. Thomas K. Varghese Jr., general thoracic surgeon, an associate professor at the University of Utah School of Medicine, and a fellow with the American College of Surgeons."

Surgeons Challenge Research on Limits of Risk Calculator
HealthLeaders Media, April 10, 2017

"ACS researchers have looked at 21 studies challenging the tool's validity and determined that the studies had design limitations. As a result, they 'should not disqualify the SRC for its intended goal—to provide a general purpose estimate of complication risk across a wide variety of operations.'"

New hospital care standards for surgery on older adults: 6 things to know
Becker's Healthcare, April 7, 2017

"According to the CDC, 38 percent of surgeries performed in 2010 were on patients age 65 or older, and that is only poised to grow as baby boomers age. To address the growing group of elderly surgical patients, the Annals of Surgery published the first comprehensive set of hospital-level surgical care standards specifically for older adults on Thursday.

The standards were put together after two years of evaluation performed by the Coalition of Quality in Geriatric Surgery, which represents the American College of Surgeons and 58 stakeholder organizations."

March 2017

Statewide Trauma System Cuts Preventable Deaths By Half
HealthLeaders Media, March 22, 2016

"The analysis, appearing this month in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons, found that over the past five years, the statewide trauma system has reduced preventable deaths by 48%, saved 79 lives in a 12-month period, and saved $186 million, providing taxpayers with a nine-fold return on investment."

Kidney Transplant Survival Up Among Babies, Kids
HealthDay, March 6, 2017

"Long-term outcomes have also improved. Only 42 percent of kids who got a new kidney between 1963 and 1983 still had a functioning transplant 10 years later. That compares to 58 percent who had transplants between 1984 and 2001, and 70 percent since then, the researchers found.

The study was recently published online in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons."

February 2017

Self-Checks Help Spot Melanoma's Return
U.S. News & World Report, February 20, 2017

"Patient-detected symptoms such as changes on their skin, coughing blood, or seizures were the most common ways that recurrence was detected, accounting for 40 percent of cases.

Thirty percent were detected by scheduled doctor exams and 26 percent were spotted in routine imaging tests, according to the study published recently in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons."

Why Weight Loss Surgery Works When Diets Don’t
New York Times, February 14, 2017

"[Jon C. Gould, MD, FACS,] suggested that people interested in bariatric surgery seek out programs that have been jointly accredited by the American College of Surgeons and the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery, which have combined forces to promote quality control."

ACS and Johns Hopkins aim to cut surgery stays in half with $16 million study
DOTmed, February 13, 2017

"The American College of Surgeon and Johns Hopkins Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality are looking for 750 hospitals that are willing to radically shake up the way they deliver surgical care."

January 2017

Cancer patients with depression have resources
Reuters, January 20, 2017

"The Commission on Cancer, an accreditation group that is part of the American College of Surgeons and issues guidelines for cancer care, expanded its emphasis on treating psychosocial distress and mental health in a 2015 guideline update. Since then, cancer centers have stepped up their assessments of mental health, she said."

December 2016

At the Cutting Edge
Virginian-Pilot, December 12, 2016

"A colleague and acquaintance for about 20 years, Dr. Patricia Turner, a clinical associate professor at the University of Chicago, said Britt’s teaching style will push you 'to achieve the highest level of understanding that you can.'...Turner leads a division of the American College of Surgeons. Britt is a past president of that organization. In the industry, if Britt calls to offer a recommendation, Turner said, 'you really take that quite seriously.'"

Gold Beach's Dr. Levine appointed to surgery council
Curry Coastal Pilot, December 9, 2016

"Gold Beach doctor Glenn Levine was one of five surgeons recently appointed to the American College of Surgeons (ACS) Advisory Council for Rural Surgery.

The appointment was announced during the annual ACS Clinical Congress in Washington, D.C., one of the largest international meetings of surgeons in the world."

November 2016

How Surgeons Stay Focused for Hours
Wall Street Journal, November 16, 2016

“Studies have shown rising levels of stress and burnout among physicians, especially surgeons. An analysis of research on the topic, published recently in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons, found that burnout rates among all doctors ranged from 37% to 53%, with surgeons close to the top of the list. Burnout often involves feelings of depression and alienation and leads to sharply reduced job satisfaction.”

Age may not affect breast reconstruction complications
Reuters, November 9, 2016

“As survival rates improve, more women are living longer after breast cancer treatment and more are seeking mastectomies and breast reconstruction, the study authors write in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons. Despite this trend, women over 60 are less likely to receive reconstruction.”

Trauma burden and services not equally distributed across U.S.
Business Insider, November 3, 2016

“Trauma centers are designated levels I through V based on the kinds of resources available there. Level I centers can provide total care for every aspect of injury while Level V centers have basic emergency department facilities and can prepare patients to be transferred to higher levels of care.

Level I and II centers were more often located in the Mid Atlantic and South Atlantic regions and in larger cities, according to the results in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons.”

October 2016

Trauma: a neglected US public health emergency
The Lancet, October 29, 2016

“In the USA, the leading cause of death in those younger than 45 years is trauma, accounting for over half of deaths in that age group. Trauma costs the USA up to US$600 billion each year and yet despite these sobering figures this epidemic goes largely unrecognised. Last week, at their 2016 Clinical Congress, the American College of Surgeons (ACS) announced a commitment to achieving zero preventable deaths from trauma. If realised, this goal would save one in five civilians and a quarter of military personnel currently killed by trauma, an estimated 30 000 lives per year in the USA alone.”

Weight-Loss Surgery May Lower Risk of Pregnancy Complications
U.S. News & World Report, October 28, 2016

“According to study co-author Brittanie Young, a medical student at the Philadelphia School of Osteopathic Medicine, ‘If the child is less at risk of being very large for its gestational age, the woman is less likely to have a C-section.’

The findings were presented recently at the Clinical Congress of the American College of Surgeons, in Washington D.C. Research presented at meetings should be viewed as preliminary until published in a peer-reviewed journal.”

Follow-up Imaging Lacking for Many After Breast Cancer Surgery
Medscape, October 27, 2016

“About one third of US women who receive surgical treatment for breast cancer are not receiving appropriate follow-up, new research suggests.

Findings from the National Cancer Database were presented here at the American College of Surgeons Clinical Congress 2016 by surgery resident Taiwo Adesoye, MD, MPH, from the University of Wisconsin, Madison.”

Tweet of the Week: Surgeons Look Like
MedPage Today, October 23, 2016

“Surgeons spun #WhatADoctorLooksLike from last week into an opportunity to highlight gender disparities among surgeons during the annual gatherings of the Association of Women Surgeons (#AWS2016) and American College of Surgeons (#ACSCC16).”

Why don't more women of color have reconstruction after breast cancer?
Philadelphia Inquirer, October 25, 2016

“[Paris Butler, MD, MPH,] who specializes in plastic and reconstructive surgery, has documented the problem nationally and investigated the role of private vs. public insurance in determining which patients receive reconstructive surgery.  While his work has found that insurance status and geographic availability to plastic surgeons likely play a role in the disparities, ‘we strongly believe it’s something about patients’ race and ethnicity that goes beyond insurance status and access to care.’ Recently, we asked him a few questions about his work, which he presented to the American College of Surgeons in D.C. on October 20th.”

Wearable Fitness Tracker Monitors Patients' Postoperative Functional Recovery At Home
Surgical Products, October 21, 2016

“A new way for surgeons to know how well their patients are regaining physical function after a major abdominal operation could be as simple as patients wearing a fitness wristband to count their steps. Results of a new study, presented at the 2016 Clinical Congress of the American College of Surgeons, show that monitoring patients' postoperative functional recovery using a commercially available, wireless activity tracker is feasible, and strongly correlates with patients' reported postoperative complications.”

Trauma Patients Not to Blame for Opioid Epidemic: Study
HealthDay, October 19, 2016

“Almost 75 percent of major trauma patients who were prescribed narcotic painkillers such as OxyContin and Percocet had stopped using them a month after leaving the hospital. And only 1 percent were still taking the drugs on a prescription basis a year later, researchers found.

‘We were really surprised by how low the numbers were for long-term opiate use,’ study senior investigator Dr. Andrew Schoenfeld said in an American College of Surgeons news release.”

Rates of preventive mastectomy doubled in a decade, and fear is a factor
United Press International, October 18, 2016

“Fear of cancer recurrence seems to be a primary reason why breast cancer patients choose to have their cancer-free breast removed at the same time as their affected breast, a new study finds…The study is to be presented Tuesday at a meeting of the American College of Surgeons (ACS) in Washington, D.C.”

Minimally invasive surgery a safe option for major liver cases, UW study finds
Seattle Times, October 17, 2016

“The odds of serious complications or death in patients who had surgeries known as major hepatectomies using minimally invasive techniques were about half those of patients who had conventional surgeries, according to an analysis by Dr. Lucas Thornblade, a UW Medicine general-surgery resident, and colleagues…‘We are encouraged by the results,’ said Thornblade, lead author of the study presented Monday at the 2016 Congress of the American College of Surgeons.”

September 2016

Study: Bariatric surgery safe, effective but could be improved
United Press International, September 26, 2016

"A newer form of weight loss surgery that reduces the size of the stomach by about 75 percent was found to be safe and have a low rate of morbidity, according to new research by the American College of Surgeons...Multiple studies have shown the procedure to be safe and effective, but researchers at ACS decided to use a new database of bariatric surgery outcomes to examine the outcome of several different techniques."

ONC Playbook aims to help practices navigate changing HIT landscape
FierceHealthcare, September 26, 2016

“IT issues have taken on greater relevance for small practices as value-based reimbursement gains steam, per FiercePracticeManagement’s previous reporting. While EHRs have historically been a point of frustration for practices, their potential link to better patient outcomes makes them a key strategic element as small practices look to navigate the emerging requirements around the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act. Frank Opelka, medical director for quality and health policy at the American College of Surgeons, called the playbook “a superb navigational tool for assisting surgeons" with MACRA looming.”

New Website Created to Inform Public About Bleeding Control
EMS World, September 21, 2016

“The American College of Surgeons and the Hartford Consensus have launched a new website that aims to provide a one-stop online resource for users to learn about bleeding control. provides diagrams, news, videos and other resources with the goal of giving information to the public to learn proper bleeding control techniques.”

Suicide risk in patients with head and neck cancer: An area of urgent need

Healio, September 10, 2016

“Psychosocial distress also is underrecognized. The American College of Surgeons and leading interdisciplinary organizations call for the integration of distress screening into cancer care. Screening is effective when implemented within a system that facilitates treatment. New approaches to treatment are needed.”

August 2016

Follow-ups via telephone safe & effective for certain patients: 5 insights
Becker’s Infection Control & Clinical Quality, August. 22, 2016

“Establishing a postoperative clinic via the telephone helped significantly improve utilization of surgeon and facility resources while maintaining patient outcomes at a Veterans Affairs facility, according to a study published by the Journal of the American College of Surgeons.”

Helmets prevent severe head injuries in bike accidents

Reuters, August 19, 2016

“Using the American College of Surgeons' National Trauma Data Bank, the researchers analyzed records of 6,267 people treated in 2012 for bleeding inside the skull after a bicycle accident.

One quarter of patients had been wearing a bicycle helmet at the time of their accident. Just over half of the patients had severe traumatic brain injuries and 3 percent died.

Researchers found that people wearing helmets had 52 percent lower risk of severe TBI, compared to unhelmeted riders, and a 44 percent lower risk of death.”

Hospitals are throwing out organs and denying transplants to keep their success rates high
Business Insider, August 11, 2016

“The study by Bozorgzadeh, published by the American College of Surgeons, found that the increasing reluctance to perform transplants on the sickest patients is directly tied to the onset of the standards enforced by CMS.

In the first five years after adoption of the standards, more than 4,300 transplant candidates were removed from waiting lists by hospitals. That's up 86 percent from the 2,311 patients delisted in the five years prior to the regulation.”

4 points on the National Surgical Patient Safety Summit & new surgical safety recommendations
Becker’s Infection Control & Clinical Quality, August 8, 2016

“The summit is a two-day event that includes more than 100 representatives from medical professional associations, insurers, healthcare systems, payers and government agencies. The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and American College of Surgeons sponsored the summit.”

For obesity surgery, consider accredited centers
Reuters, August 2, 2016

“Morton and colleagues report in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons that in 10 of the 13 studies, accreditation made a significant difference. Six of the eight studies that reported mortality showed a significant reduction at the accredited centers; the risk of death was two to three times higher at hospitals that weren’t accredited.”

Some cancer patients may also struggle with depression
Miami Herald, August 1, 2016

"Oncology providers have become increasingly concerned about the emotional well-being of their patients. In fact, in 2015, the American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer started requiring cancer centers to ask their patients if they are having emotional distress."

July 2016

Loss of independence post-surgery linked to poor outcomes
Reuters, July 22, 2016

"For surgery patients over age 65, losing function or mobility or needing more care after surgery is linked to a higher risk of being readmitted to the hospital or dying, according to a new study.

Almost 60 percent of patients lose at least some of their independence after surgery, said lead author Dr. Julia R. Berian of the American College of Surgeons in Chicago, Illinois."

New Initiative Aims to Combat Disparities in Surgical Care, Outcomes
Medical Ethics Advisor, July 1, 2016

"A new initiative to support research on disparities in surgical care and outcomes for disadvantaged populations was recently launched by the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities. The initiative will provide grant opportunities on surgical disparities research.

The research will focus on the following five priorities, which were identified at the May 2015 Inaugural National Institutes of Health (NIH)-American College of Surgeons (ACS) Symposium on Surgical Disparities Research Symposium."

June 2016

Free tourniquet training open to the public
9NEWS, June 19, 2016

The Denver Health Paramedic Division is offering free Bleeding Control (B-Con) courses to the Denver community June 20-23. The skills taught in the B-Con course are consistent with the recommendations of the ACS-led Hartford Consensus, which advocates that “no one should die from uncontrolled bleeding.”

With Active-Shooter Events on the Rise, Advocates Say Everyone Should Know How to Stop Bleeding
U.S. News & World Report, June 14, 2016

"The realization that many people are dying who might be saved prompted [Lenworth M.] Jacobs [MD, FACS], a leader of the American College of Surgeons, to propose that the world's largest surgeons' organization take action. The group formed a committee made up of representatives of government, law enforcement, defense and medical officials to develop a national policy designed to increase survival from active shooter and mass casualty events."

Phoenix shows support for Orlando shooting victims [news story]
Cronkite News 06/14/2016 [video]
Cronkite News, June 13, 2016

“Sydney Vail [MD, FACS], a Phoenix doctor who treated four victims of the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, in which 32 people were killed, carries a trauma kit around his ankle, just in case.

Dr. Vail, who heads the trauma division at Maricopa Medical Center, said he believes Arizona is prepared to handle a major event like the one in Orlando.”

May 2016

Public use of tourniquets, bleeding control kits
EMS1, May 31, 2016

“The American College of Surgeons convened a special committee to identify changes necessary to improve survival following active shooter and MCIs. One of the major themes to emerge from these series of meetings, known as the Hartford Consensus, is that the public will act as responders to provide aid before the arrival of professional rescuers.

Another major theme of the Hartford Consensus, which was the focus of the second Hartford Consensus Conference, is the value of a comprehensive educational program for all members of this trauma chain of survival. Critical to this concept and the focus of third Hartford Consensus Conference, is educational campaigns targeting members of the general public, which should include training on how to apply direct pressure, how to use hemostatic dressings, and how to apply tourniquets.”

Colon cancer rising in people under 50
CBS News, May 25, 2016

“Colon and rectal (colorectal) cancer is the third most common cancer, according to the U.S. National Cancer Institute (NCI). The NCI estimates there will be more than 134,000 new cases in 2016. Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths, second only to lung cancer, the NCI reports.
For the study, Sutton and colleagues reviewed data on more than 1 million colorectal cancer cases listed in the National Cancer Database from 2004 to 2013.”

‘Cut suits’ give a slice of realism to training
San Diego Union-Tribune, May 24, 2016

“The American College of Surgeons also has called for better emergency training, and in 2008 it launched a Trauma Quality Improvement Program. The National Trauma Institute estimates that traumatic injuries kill about 190,000 Americans per year and account for about 2.3 million hospitalizations.”

People With HIV Are Less Likely To Get Needed Cancer Treatment

NPR, May 20, 2016

“The study used the National Cancer Data Base to analyze treatment for adults younger than 65 who were diagnosed with any of the 10 most common cancers to affect HIV patients between 2003 and 2011. The study included 10,265 HIV-infected adults and 2.2 million without HIV.

The database, which is sponsored by the American Cancer Society and the American College of Surgeons, captures roughly 70 percent of newly diagnosed cancer cases in the United States.”

Children in car crashes fare better at pediatric trauma centers, study says
United Press International, May 20, 2016

"For the study, published in the Journal of Pediatric Surgery, researchers reviewed medical data for 28,145 patients under age 18 collected for the National Trauma Data Bank between 2009 and 2012, estimating quality of care for children hurt in a car accident at pediatric and general adult trauma centers."

One surgeon says you need an operation. Another says you don't. Here's why that happens.
Vox, May 19, 2016

“One possibility is using a risk calculator, like this one developed by the American College of Surgeons: It takes high-quality data from millions of patients around the country who have had similar operations and uses variables — such as how sick a patient is and the patient's age — to come up with estimates on the risks of surgery.”

The Government Spends $5 Billion a Year On Cancer—So Why Hasn’t It Been Cured Yet?
Men’s Health, May 4, 2016

“Melanoma, meanwhile, often returns years later, even after that 5-year mark. More than one in 20 patients have a recurrence a decade after their first diagnosis, according to a study in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons.”

April 2016

Puerto Rico is losing a doctor a day
CNN Money, April 13, 2016

“‘I have a hard time recruiting. We can't compete with institutions in the U.S.,’ says Dr. Fernando Luis Joglar. He's a vascular surgeon and president of the American College of Surgeons Puerto Rico Chapter.”

Most Americans want to learn how to help those injured in disasters
United Press International, April 5, 2016

"Among respondents with first aid training, 98 percent said they would be very or somewhat likely to attempt to control severe bleeding from a leg wound in a family member. A random sample of respondents found that 61 percent would be very likely and 31 percent somewhat likely to try to stop severe bleeding in a car crash victim they didn't know.

The survey results were published online recently in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons."

March 2016

How to Spot and Treat a Child’s Hernia
New York Times, March 28, 2016

“According to the American College of Surgeons, an open repair is needed by about 1 percent of children born full-term, 15 percent of those born prematurely and 20 percent of those who experienced an incarceration.”

More women with cancer in one breast are having double mastectomies. That might not be a good idea. 
Washington Post, March 7, 2016

“The Duke study echoes the findings of a study presented last year at a conference of the American College of Surgeons. That study found that for younger women with early-stage, non-inherited cancer in one breast, a single mastectomy leads to a slightly higher quality of life and lower costs over the two decades, compared with CPMs.”

Antibiotics instead of appendectomy? UW study may be ‘game changer’
Seattle Times, March 6, 2016

“A review led by UW researchers and published in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons this year found that, despite the European trials, it’s still too early to change the U.S. standard to a drugs-first approach.”

The way we think about cancer is outdated. Here’s how to change that.

Vox, March 2, 2016

“The psychological effects of cancer are in fact so widespread that the American College of Surgeons recently required all accredited cancer centers to screen for the level of cancer distress in new patients and then offer psychosocial care to match patients' needs.”

January 2016

Frail patients more likely to die in the year after surgery
Reuters, January 26, 2016

"Frailty increases the risk of death, complications, longer hospital stay and discharge to a nursing facility, but does not exclude anyone from a particular operation, [Dr. Jason M.] Johanning told Reuters Health by email.

'Rather it gives the operative team the ability to have an open and frank discussion with the patient about their goals of care and what to expect and how to proceed when complications occur postoperatively,' he said.

The American College of Surgeons in connection with the John A. Hartford Foundation is designing a program to address these system issues, he said."

New Standards Seek to Improve Children's Surgical Care
Hospitals & Health Networks, January 26, 2016

"As new technology dominates the headlines in the personalization of health care, allocating hospital resources and providing hospital standards are also an important part of moving health care into the future. The American College of Surgeons in collaboration with the Task Force for Children’s Surgical Care released its updated standards for 2016, Optimal Resources for Children’s Surgical Care to do just that.  The document is central to providing improved surgical care and customized attention children patients need. And with more than five million infants and children to undergo a surgical procedure in the U.S. annually, according to the same report, developing adequate surgical standards for children is a crucial goal."

Joint Guideline Addresses Geriatric Perioperative Care
Medscape, January 11, 2016

"The American College of Surgeons (ACS) and American Geriatrics Society (AGS) have issued joint best practice recommendations for geriatric perioperative care. The consensus-based guideline was published online January 4 on the ACS National Surgical Quality Improvement Program website."

Tourniquets, now carried by Boston police, weren’t always standard
Boston Globe, January 9, 2016

"In 2013, officials from the American College of Surgeons, the Federal Bureau of Investigations, along with police and fire organizations, concluded in the 'Hartford Consensus' that the primary cause of preventable death in mass casualty events—such as the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut—is blood loss. And the best way to stop blood loss is through a properly applied tourniquet."