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2020, vol. 148, iss. 9-10, pp. 590-593
ECHOS survey on echocardiography in Serbia during the COVID-19 pandemic
aUniversity of Belgrade, Faculty of Medicine + Clinical Center of Serbia, Clinic for Cardiology, Belgrade
bUniversity of Novi Sad, Faculty of Medicine + University of Novi Sad, Faculty of Medicine, Institute for Cardiovascular Disease
cUniversity of Defence, Faculty of Medicine of the Military Medical Academy, Belgrade + Military Medical Academy, Belgrade
dUniveristy of Niš, Faculty of Medicine + Univeristy of Niš, Faculty of Medicine, Institute of Prevention, Treatment and Rehabilitation of Rheumatic and Cardiovascular Disease 'Niška Banja'
eUniversity of Belgrade, Faculty of Medicine, Clinical Center 'Zemun'
fUniversity of Belgrade, Faculty of Medicine + University of Belgrade, Faculty of Medicine, Clinical Center 'Zemun'

emailfuture.ivan@gmail.com
Abstract
Introduction/Objective the purpose of the current Echocardiographic Society of Serbia (ECHOS) survey was to assess echocardiography practice in Serbia during the Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Methods an online survey consisting of 12 questions about the use of echocardiography, the availability of portable ultrasound devices and personal protective equipment (PPE) was sent to all ECHOS members. Results Overall, 126 ECHOS members (43%) answered the survey. One-third of respondents (36%) were physicians from specialized COVID-19 centers. During the pandemic, indications for echocardiographic examination were restricted in both COVID-19 and non-COVID-19 centers. In COVID-19 centers, 41% of respondents performed lung ultrasound to each patient versus 26% in non-COVID-19 centers. Transesophageal echocardiography was not performed in suspected or confirmed COVID-19 cases in any center. Portable ultrasound devices were available to 66% of respondents from COVID-19 versus 44% of respondents from non-COVID-19 centers (p = 0.018). The respondents reported regular use of PPE, regardless of the patient's COVID-19 status and found their personal knowledge about protective measures and use of PPE satisfactory. Conclusion During the COVID-19 pandemic in Serbia, indications for echocardiography were restricted to clinical scenarios in which the results of examination were expected to alter patient management. In both COVID-19 and non-COVID-19 centers, the use of PPE was in line with national and international recommendations. A wider availability of portable ultrasound devices and application of lung ultrasound could improve patient management in similar situations in the future.
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About

article language: English
document type: Preliminary Report
DOI: 10.2298/SARH200606075K
received: 06/06/2020
revised: 13/09/2020
accepted: 14/09/2020
published online: 16/09/2020
published in SCIndeks: 13/11/2020

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