26 August 2021 | News
The study involved over 140,000 patients in 116 countries
Image Credit: Shutterstock
A study led by the University of Birmingham and Edinburgh experts has been awarded the Guinness World Records title for the world’s largest scientific collaboration - involving over 140,000 patients in 116 countries.
The record for ‘Most authors on a single peer-reviewed academic paper’ is now held by the Universities of Birmingham and Edinburgh after 15,025 scientists around the globe contributed to major research into the impact of COVID-19 on surgical patients.
Funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), the researchers concluded that patients waiting for elective surgery should be treated as a vulnerable group and access COVID-19 vaccines ahead of the general population – potentially helping to avoid thousands of post-operative deaths linked to the virus.
This could be particularly important for Low- and Middle-income Countries (LMICs) where access to vaccination remains limited and mitigation measures such as nasal swab screening and COVID-free surgical pathways to reduce the risk of virus-related complications are not available for many patients.
Overall, the scientists estimated that global prioritisation of pre-operative vaccination for elective patients could prevent an additional 58,687 COVID-19-related deaths in one year.
The COVIDSurg Collaborative international team of researchers published its findings in BJS, Europe’s leading surgical journal, after studying data from 1,667 hospitals in countries including Australia, Brazil, China, India, UAE, UK and USA.