While COVID-19 has forced distance between individuals, it has caused professional medical organizations to pool resources and cooperate in new ways. For the neurodiagnostic community and their patients this will confer benefits not just during the pandemic but likely for years to come.

As soon as the novel coronavirus began to spread in the U.S., ASET- The Neurodiagnostic Society started working with other organizations to help keep their members and the patients they care for safe.

In April, ASET leaders began meeting every Friday, sharing information with their counterparts at the American Epilepsy Society (AES) and the American Academy of Neurology (AAN). An early result of this collaboration was the prompt publication of ASET’s COVID-19 resource sheet. This web page covers topics such as cleaning and disinfection, respiratory isolation precautions, proper donning and doffing of PPE. It also explores COVID-19 issues related to sleep, IONM, and NCS/NCV studies.

Connie Kubiak

“If you call me as a tech and say, ‘I have this question,’ I can refer you to our page that has links to all the other locations that are pertinent to our members and vice versa,” said ASET President Connie Kubiak. “Usually [each society or foundation] has their own piece and now everybody is sharing. I think we’re going to see more collaborations.”

In early June the work group released another set of recommendations: ”Considerations for Reopening Epilepsy Centers in Light of COVID-19.” The document was authored by:

  • NAEC: National Association of Epilepsy Centers
  • ACNS: American Clinical Neurophysiology Society
  • AES: American Epilepsy Society
  • AAN: American Academy of Neurology
  • ASET-The Neurodiagnostic Society

“Input from these various subject-matter experts made it possible to develop a list of recommendations that could be readily adopted by hospitals and other facilities who treat and care for epilepsy patients,” write Maureen Carroll and Linda Kelly of ASET. “The joint statement was published on each of the stakeholder’s websites and made available along with other important COVID-19 resources on June 1st. We at ASET believe that it is important to collaborate with our professional counterparts and that our collective efforts ultimately benefit the patients entrusted to our care.”

Having a seat at this new table enables these societies to have their voices amplified on issues most important to NDTs.

“There is a real opportunity to do some project work together that benefits members,” said ASET Executive Director Kevin Helm. “Some of our technologists are a little bit isolated sometimes. ASET has an interesting role here to be able to help with that.”

Special thanks to the following staff at ASET-The Neurodiagnostic Society for their insights on this issue:

  • Connie Kubiak, R. EEG/EP T., CNIM, CLTM, FASET, President
  • Kevin Helm, MBA, CAE, Executive Director
  • Maureen Carroll, BS, R. EEG/EP T., RPSGT, CNIM, Online Learning and Development Manager
  • Linda Kelly, MS, R. EEG/EP T., R.NCS.T., FASET, CSSGB, Director of Education