James Kinross profile photoJames Kinross updates us on PanSurg which was created in recognition of the unparalleled challenges currently facing healthcare systems around the world from the COVID-19 pandemic.

PanSurg is a global hub for surgeons and related professionals to share experiences, policy, data and research for the delivery of safe, effective surgery during the pandemic. We aim to make a difference to frontline surgical care in real-time.

As COVID-19 spreads beyond borders, it is vital that we draw on our collective experiences quickly and intelligently to serve our patients safely and effectively.

Flexibility and learning are central to effective adaptation so we have created a space for real-time sharing of work and ideas to support safe surgical practice globally in the context of this pandemic.

The primary ethos of this project is collaborative shared learning, we must come together at this time to work together to ensure our patients receive the best possible care at this most challenging of times.

Core Activities

Education and Training

  1. Webinars will take place via live video-conferencing facilities allowing audience participation from around the world. Each webinar will have invited panellists with useful and practical knowledge to share as the pandemic evolves.
    We have invited practitioners and decision-makers who have worked in their respective health systems through the pandemic at various stages and can offer their insights on what has been learned. They offer important messages of advice to those still facing the crisis and those who are about to meet it. The webinar sessions will also incorporate questions from the wider community who have registered for the event. Webinars will be recorded and posted once completed for future reference.
  2. Educational materials; will continue to populate the website as and when these become available to ensure our website information remains current with links to the most recent information and publications that guide current thinking and management.

Data and Population Science

PanSurg PREDICT project; As part of the response to COVID-19, we are collecting data on the impact of COVID-19 on surgical services in the UK.

Our aims are to:

  • Create live datasets for surgical patients during the pandemic.
  • Generate real-time risk prediction models to inform decision making for surgical patients.
  • Provide guidance on current and ongoing surgical practice based upon data collected through this initiative.

This project aims to generate a real-time research feed. As we receive and analyse data on the COVID-19 pandemic and its affects on healthcare delivery we'll be pushing out data and models in real-time.

We aim to provide real-time risk prediction models to help you manage patients with surgical pathology during the pandemic. This project is dependent on data entry to train our models, so we implore you to please register and collaborate with this study, which will serve to guide our clinical decision making during this pandemic.

Translational and Basic Science

  1. Prognostic markers; Working in collaboration with our scientists as Imperial College, we aim to provide novel insights into the interaction between COVID-19 and surgical pathology and surgical intervention. Collection and analysis of biofluids may provide key prognostic markers that will guide surgical intervention during this pandemic.
  2. COVID-19 aerosolisation; again working in collaboration with our scientists at Imperial College we will aim to evaluate the safety of operating on patients with COVID-19. Specifically the potential for aerosolisation of the virus through diathermy or laparoscopy etc.


  1. Hospital staff well-being; During this time of pandemic, staff well-being remains critical to maintaining a workforce, this is not just simply physical but also psychological well-being. We will undertake a series of questionnaire studies across the UK to see how psychologically the healthcare professionals are coping with this extreme stress of the pandemic. Through this investigation we hope to create further specifically tailored online resources and strategies that may support healthcare professionals during this challenging period.
  2. Allocation of resources; Using several predictive models, we will aim to model how healthcare services may need to restructure during this pandemic. This will include both local restructuring guidance learned from experiences, and also regional or national restructuring which will be informed by predictive models generated from the research undertaken through this collaborative.

Concluding remarks

This project has been set up by surgeons and surgical trainees with the primary goal of collaborative learning. We are in crisis, our traditional model of publication, learning and implementation will fail in this current pandemic. The PanSurg project will provide dynamic interactive and real-time learning and dissemination of knowledge that is crucial to optimise care for our patients in these extreme times.

Website: https://www.pansurg.org/
Twitter handle: @pan_surg

James Kinross is a Senior Lecturer in Colorectal Surgery and a Consultant Surgeon at Imperial College London. His clinical interest is in minimally invasive and robotic surgery for colorectal cancer. He was trained in Northwest London, and he was an NIHR Clinical Lecturer in Surgery and an Ethicon Laparoscopic Fellow in Colorectal Surgery. He was awarded a Royal College of Surgeons of England training fellowship during his PhD on the gut microbiome and he was funded by the Academy of Medical Sciences as an early stage lecturer. He is a visiting Professor at the Royal College of Surgeons of Ireland. He performs translational research into computational and systems biology in surgery and the gut microbiome. He is also funded by the NIHR to perform intra-operative mass spectrometry (known as Real-time Electrospray Ionisation Mass Spectrometry or REIMS) for improving precision in the surgical treatment of colorectal cancer.

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