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South African Journal of Surgery

versión On-line ISSN 2078-5151
versión impresa ISSN 0038-2361


BOTHA, R et al. Surgical training during the COVID-19 pandemic - a single institution's trainee survey. S. Afr. j. surg. [online]. 2022, vol.60, n.1, pp.40-43. ISSN 2078-5151.

BACKGROUND: Few studies have assessed the impact of COVID-19 on surgical training in low- and middle-income countries. The aim of this study was to survey the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on postgraduate surgical training, research and registrar wellbeing in South AfricaMETHODS: A cross-sectional study was conducted as an online survey from 5 October 2020 to 1 December 2020. The study population was registrars from all surgical disciplines at the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences of Stellenbosch University. The survey consisted of 26 multiple-choice and five open-ended qualitative questions on the impact of COVID-19 on physical and mental wellbeing, skills acquisition and postgraduate researchRESULTS: Of 98 surgical registrars, 35 (36%) responded. Twenty-three (65.7%) reported missed planned surgical rotations, 30 (85.7%) decreased surgical training time, and 22 (62.9%) reported a perceived decrease in training quality. Simulated skills training was only available to eight (22.9%) participants. Twenty-four (68.6%) experienced burnout and/or depression symptoms during the pandemic. Twenty-seven (77.1%) reported that postgraduate research was unaffected by the pandemicCONCLUSION: During the COVID-19 pandemic, surgical trainees at this institution reported a decrease in the quality of surgical training and skills acquisition and a negative impact on their mental wellbeingSupplement available online:

Palabras clave : COVID-19; education; medical; graduate; specialties; surgical.

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