By: 21 May 2020
Experts unite to provide multidisciplinary guidance for safe tracheostomy care

Experts from across healthcare, including anaesthetists and intensive care staff, have teamed up to provide new multidisciplinary guidance for safe tracheostomy care during the Covid‐19 pandemic.

With the Covid‐19 pandemic causing a surge in patients who need a tracheostomy, professional bodies representing staff who care for patients with tracheostomies during illness, rehabilitation, and recovery have collaborated together to produce standard guidelines, which have been published in the journal Anaesthesia.

The consensus guidance includes: infectivity of patients with respect to tracheostomy indications and timing; aerosol‐generating procedures and risks to staff; insertion procedures; and management following tracheostomy.

Dr Brendan McGrath, National Clinical Advisor for Tracheostomy & Intensive Care Consultant at Manchester University Hospital, told the Association of Anaesthetists: “These consensus recommendations are based on wide-ranging expert opinion and informed by the best available evidence. They will help standardise the approach to managing complex patients with tracheostomies and improve the quality and safety of care delivered by diverse staff.