The American College of Surgeons Children's Surgery Verification and Quality Improvement Program: implications for anesthesiologists

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Abstract

Purpose of review

The Task Force for Children's Surgical Care, an ad-hoc multidisciplinary group of invited leaders in pediatric perioperative medicine, was assembled in May 2012 to consider approaches to optimize delivery of children's surgical care in today's competitive national healthcare environment. Over the subsequent 3 years, with support from the American College of Surgeons (ACS) and Children's Hospital Association (CHA), the group established principles regarding perioperative resource standards, quality improvement and safety processes, data collection, and verification that were used to develop an ACS-sponsored Children's Surgery Verification and Quality Improvement Program (ACS CSV).

Recent findings

The voluntary ACS CSV was officially launched in January 2017 and more than 125 pediatric surgical programs have expressed interest in verification. ACS CSV-verified programs have specific requirements for pediatric anesthesia leadership, resources, and the availability of pediatric anesthesiologists or anesthesiologists with pediatric expertise to care for infants and young children.

Summary

The present review outlines the history of the ACS CSV, key elements of the program, and the standards specific to pediatric anesthesiology. As with the pediatric trauma programs initiated more than 40 years ago, this program has the potential to significantly improve surgical care for infants and children in the United States and Canada.

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