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Surgical Privileging in Gynecology: A Fellows’ Pelvic Research Network Study

Crane, Andrea K. MD*; Illanes, Diego S. MD; Adams, Sonia R. MD; Nosti, Patrick MD§; Crisp, Catrina MD, MSc; LeBrun, Emily Weber MD; Sung, Vivian MD, MPH#On Behalf of FPRN


The article appearing on pages 19–22 of the January 2014 issue contained an error in the name of the sixth author. The name should have appeared as Elizabeth E. Weber LeBrun, or Weber LeBrun, EE. The publisher regrets the error.

Female Pelvic Medicine & Reconstructive Surgery. 20(3):184, May/June 2014.

Female Pelvic Medicine & Reconstructive Surgery: January/February 2014 - Volume 20 - Issue 1 - p 19–22
doi: 10.1097/SPV.0000000000000050
Original Articles

Objectives This study aimed to describe the criteria used by US hospitals to grant surgical privileges for select gynecologic procedures and to compare the privileging processes between university-based and community-based hospitals.

Methods We conducted a cross-sectional study from January 2011 to December 2012 that included institutions represented by Fellows’ Pelvic Research Network members. A 5-page, anonymous survey was distributed to hospitals to determine the hospital criteria used for initial surgical privileges and for renewal of privileges for 13 gynecologic procedures. Information on training requirements, minimum number of supervised cases, and annual case number needed for maintenance was obtained. Criteria for privileging were described and compared between university-based and community-based hospitals.

Results Of the 25 institutions that completed the surveys, 56% were university-based and 44% were community-based. Community hospitals differed significantly from university institutions with a larger portion of community hospitals requiring preceptorship for laparoscopic hysterectomy (70% vs 15%, P = 0.027), robotic hysterectomy (90% vs 25%, P = 0.012), robotic sacrocolpopexy (90% vs 20%, P = 0.009), and sacral neuromodulation (67% vs 0%, P = 0.004).

Conclusions Considerable variability exists in the criteria used by US hospitals for surgical privileging in gynecology. When compared to university centers, a higher proportion of community hospitals required preceptorship for minimally invasive hysterectomy, robotic sacrocolpopexy, and sacral neuromodulation.

Gynecologic surgery credentialing requirements in the United States vary with significant differences between university-based and community-based hospitals.

From the *Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC; †Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Reliant Medical Group/University of Massachusetts, Worcester; ‡Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Mount Auburn Hospital/Harvard University, Cambridge, MA; §Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Georgetown/Washington Hospital Center, Washington, DC; ∥Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Good Samaritan Hospital, Cincinnati, OH; ¶Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL; and #Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Women and Infants Hospital/Brown University, Providence, RI.

Reprints: Andrea K. Crane, MD, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of North Carolina, 3032 Old Clinic Bldg, Campus Box 7570, Chapel Hill, NC 27599. E-mail:

The authors have declared they have no conflicts of interest.

© 2014 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins