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1.
Lancet Digit Health ; 4(4): e266-e278, 2022 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1730184

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Uncertainty in patients' COVID-19 status contributes to treatment delays, nosocomial transmission, and operational pressures in hospitals. However, the typical turnaround time for laboratory PCR remains 12-24 h and lateral flow devices (LFDs) have limited sensitivity. Previously, we have shown that artificial intelligence-driven triage (CURIAL-1.0) can provide rapid COVID-19 screening using clinical data routinely available within 1 h of arrival to hospital. Here, we aimed to improve the time from arrival to the emergency department to the availability of a result, do external and prospective validation, and deploy a novel laboratory-free screening tool in a UK emergency department. METHODS: We optimised our previous model, removing less informative predictors to improve generalisability and speed, developing the CURIAL-Lab model with vital signs and readily available blood tests (full blood count [FBC]; urea, creatinine, and electrolytes; liver function tests; and C-reactive protein) and the CURIAL-Rapide model with vital signs and FBC alone. Models were validated externally for emergency admissions to University Hospitals Birmingham, Bedfordshire Hospitals, and Portsmouth Hospitals University National Health Service (NHS) trusts, and prospectively at Oxford University Hospitals, by comparison with PCR testing. Next, we compared model performance directly against LFDs and evaluated a combined pathway that triaged patients who had either a positive CURIAL model result or a positive LFD to a COVID-19-suspected clinical area. Lastly, we deployed CURIAL-Rapide alongside an approved point-of-care FBC analyser to provide laboratory-free COVID-19 screening at the John Radcliffe Hospital (Oxford, UK). Our primary improvement outcome was time-to-result, and our performance measures were sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive values, and area under receiver operating characteristic curve (AUROC). FINDINGS: 72 223 patients met eligibility criteria across the four validating hospital groups, in a total validation period spanning Dec 1, 2019, to March 31, 2021. CURIAL-Lab and CURIAL-Rapide performed consistently across trusts (AUROC range 0·858-0·881, 95% CI 0·838-0·912, for CURIAL-Lab and 0·836-0·854, 0·814-0·889, for CURIAL-Rapide), achieving highest sensitivity at Portsmouth Hospitals (84·1%, Wilson's 95% CI 82·5-85·7, for CURIAL-Lab and 83·5%, 81·8-85·1, for CURIAL-Rapide) at specificities of 71·3% (70·9-71·8) for CURIAL-Lab and 63·6% (63·1-64·1) for CURIAL-Rapide. When combined with LFDs, model predictions improved triage sensitivity from 56·9% (51·7-62·0) for LFDs alone to 85·6% with CURIAL-Lab (81·6-88·9; AUROC 0·925) and 88·2% with CURIAL-Rapide (84·4-91·1; AUROC 0·919), thereby reducing missed COVID-19 cases by 65% with CURIAL-Lab and 72% with CURIAL-Rapide. For the prospective deployment of CURIAL-Rapide, 520 patients were enrolled for point-of-care FBC analysis between Feb 18 and May 10, 2021, of whom 436 received confirmatory PCR testing and ten (2·3%) tested positive. Median time from arrival to a CURIAL-Rapide result was 45 min (IQR 32-64), 16 min (26·3%) sooner than with LFDs (61 min, 37-99; log-rank p<0·0001), and 6 h 52 min (90·2%) sooner than with PCR (7 h 37 min, 6 h 5 min to 15 h 39 min; p<0·0001). Classification performance was high, with sensitivity of 87·5% (95% CI 52·9-97·8), specificity of 85·4% (81·3-88·7), and negative predictive value of 99·7% (98·2-99·9). CURIAL-Rapide correctly excluded infection for 31 (58·5%) of 53 patients who were triaged by a physician to a COVID-19-suspected area but went on to test negative by PCR. INTERPRETATION: Our findings show the generalisability, performance, and real-world operational benefits of artificial intelligence-driven screening for COVID-19 over standard-of-care in emergency departments. CURIAL-Rapide provided rapid, laboratory-free screening when used with near-patient FBC analysis, and was able to reduce the number of patients who tested negative for COVID-19 but were triaged to COVID-19-suspected areas. FUNDING: The Wellcome Trust, University of Oxford Medical and Life Sciences Translational Fund.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Triage , Artificial Intelligence , COVID-19/diagnosis , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , State Medicine
2.
2021.
Preprint in English | Other preprints | ID: ppcovidwho-296041

ABSTRACT

Background Uncertainty in patients’ COVID-19 status contributes to treatment delays, nosocomial transmission, and operational pressures in hospitals. However, typical turnaround times for batch-processed laboratory PCR tests remain 12-24h. Although rapid antigen lateral flow testing (LFD) has been widely adopted in UK emergency care settings, sensitivity is limited. We recently demonstrated that AI-driven triage (CURIAL-1.0) allows high-throughput COVID-19 screening using clinical data routinely available within 1h of arrival to hospital. Here we aimed to determine operational and safety improvements over standard-care, performing external/prospective evaluation across four NHS trusts with updated algorithms optimised for generalisability and speed, and deploying a novel lab-free screening pathway in a UK emergency department. Methods We rationalised predictors in CURIAL-1.0 to optimise separately for generalisability and speed, developing CURIAL-Lab with vital signs and routine laboratory blood predictors (FBC, U&E, LFT, CRP) and CURIAL-Rapide with vital signs and FBC alone. Models were calibrated during training to 90% sensitivity and validated externally for unscheduled admissions to Portsmouth University Hospitals, University Hospitals Birmingham and Bedfordshire Hospitals NHS trusts, and prospectively during the second-wave of the UK COVID-19 epidemic at Oxford University Hospitals (OUH). Predictions were generated using first-performed blood tests and vital signs and compared against confirmatory viral nucleic acid testing. Next, we retrospectively evaluated a novel clinical pathway triaging patients to COVID-19-suspected clinical areas where either model prediction or LFD results were positive, comparing sensitivity and NPV with LFD results alone. Lastly, we deployed CURIAL-Rapide alongside an approved point-of-care FBC analyser (OLO;SightDiagnostics, Israel) to provide lab-free COVID-19 screening in the John Radcliffe Hospital’s Emergency Department (Oxford, UK), as trust-approved service improvement. Our primary improvement outcome was time-to-result availability;secondary outcomes were sensitivity, specificity, PPV, and NPV assessed against a PCR reference standard. We compared CURIAL-Rapide’s performance with clinician triage and LFD results within standard-care. Results 72,223 patients met eligibility criteria across external and prospective validation sites. Model performance was consistent across trusts (CURIAL-Lab: AUROCs range 0.858-0.881;CURIAL-Rapide 0.836-0.854), with highest sensitivity achieved at Portsmouth University Hospitals (CURIAL-Lab:84.1% [95% Wilson’s score CIs 82.5-85.7];CURIAL-Rapide:83.5% [81.8 - 85.1]) at specificities of 71.3% (95% Wilson’s score CIs: 70.9 - 71.8) and 63.6% (63.1 - 64.1). For 3,207 patients receiving LFD-triage within routine care for OUH admissions between December 23, 2021 and March 6, 2021, a combined clinical pathway increased sensitivity from 56.9% for LFDs alone (95% CI 51.7-62.0) to 88.2% with CURIAL-Rapide (84.4-91.1;AUROC 0.919) and 85.6% with CURIAL-Lab (81.6-88.9;AUROC 0.925). 520 patients were prospectively enrolled for point-of-care FBC analysis between February 18, 2021 and May 10, 2021, of whom 436 received confirmatory PCR testing within routine care and 10 (2.3%) tested positive. Median time from patient arrival to availability of CURIAL-Rapide result was 45:00 min (32-64), 16 minutes (26.3%) sooner than LFD results (61:00 min, 37-99;log-rank p<0.0001), and 6:52 h (90.2%) sooner than PCR results (7:37 h, 6:05-15:39;p<0.0001). Sensitivity and specificity of CURIAL-Rapide were 87.5% (52.9-97.8) and 85.4% (81.3-88.7), therefore achieving high NPV (99.7%, 98.2-99.9). CURIAL-Rapide correctly excluded COVID-19 for 58.5% of negative patients who were triaged by a clinician to ‘COVID-19-suspected’ (amber) areas. Impact CURIAL-Lab & CURIAL-Rapide are generalisable, high-throughput screening tests for COVID-19, rapidly excluding the illness with higher NPV than LFDs. CURIAL-Rapide can be used in comb nation with near-patient FBC analysis for rapid, lab-free screening, and may reduce the number of COVID-19-negative patients triaged to enhanced precautions (‘amber’) clinical areas.

3.
J Infect ; 84(1): 40-47, 2022 Jan.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1487846

ABSTRACT

Objective To describe the impact of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic on the incidence of paediatric viral respiratory tract infection in Oxfordshire, UK. Methods Data on paediatric Emergency Department (ED) attendances (0-15 years inclusive), respiratory virus testing, vital signs and mortality at Oxford University Hospitals were summarised using descriptive statistics. Results Between 1-March-2016 and 30-July-2021, 155,056 ED attendances occurred and 7,195 respiratory virus PCRs were performed. Detection of all pathogens was suppressed during the first national lockdown. Rhinovirus and adenovirus rates increased when schools reopened September-December 2020, then fell, before rising in March-May 2021. The usual winter RSV peak did not occur in 2020/21, with an inter-seasonal rise (32/1,000 attendances in 0-3 yr olds) in July 2021. Influenza remained suppressed throughout. A higher paediatric early warning score (PEWS) was seen for attendees with adenovirus during the pandemic compared to pre-pandemic (p = 0.04, Mann-Witney U test), no other differences in PEWS were seen. Conclusions SARS-CoV-2 caused major changes in the incidence of paediatric respiratory viral infection in Oxfordshire, with implications for clinical service demand, testing strategies, timing of palivizumab RSV prophylaxis, and highlighting the need to understand which public health interventions are most effective for preventing respiratory virus infections.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Respiratory Syncytial Virus Infections , Respiratory Tract Infections , Child , Communicable Disease Control , Hospitals, Teaching , Humans , Pandemics , Respiratory Syncytial Virus Infections/epidemiology , Respiratory Tract Infections/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2 , United Kingdom
4.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 1951, 2021 03 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1157905

ABSTRACT

Serological detection of antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 is essential for establishing rates of seroconversion in populations, and for seeking evidence for a level of antibody that may be protective against COVID-19 disease. Several high-performance commercial tests have been described, but these require centralised laboratory facilities that are comparatively expensive, and therefore not available universally. Red cell agglutination tests do not require special equipment, are read by eye, have short development times, low cost and can be applied at the Point of Care. Here we describe a quantitative Haemagglutination test (HAT) for the detection of antibodies to the receptor binding domain of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein. The HAT has a sensitivity of 90% and specificity of 99% for detection of antibodies after a PCR diagnosed infection. We will supply aliquots of the test reagent sufficient for ten thousand test wells free of charge to qualified research groups anywhere in the world.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/analysis , COVID-19 Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , Hemagglutination Tests/methods , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Agglutination Tests/methods , Antibodies, Monoclonal/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/blood , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay/methods , Humans , Point-of-Care Systems , Polymerase Chain Reaction , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Sensitivity and Specificity , Seroconversion
5.
Wellcome Open Res ; 5: 139, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1140800

ABSTRACT

Background: The COVID-19 pandemic caused >1 million infections during January-March 2020. There is an urgent need for reliable antibody detection approaches to support diagnosis, vaccine development, safe release of individuals from quarantine, and population lock-down exit strategies. We set out to evaluate the performance of ELISA and lateral flow immunoassay (LFIA) devices. Methods: We tested plasma for COVID (severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2; SARS-CoV-2) IgM and IgG antibodies by ELISA and using nine different LFIA devices. We used a panel of plasma samples from individuals who have had confirmed COVID infection based on a PCR result (n=40), and pre-pandemic negative control samples banked in the UK prior to December-2019 (n=142). Results: ELISA detected IgM or IgG in 34/40 individuals with a confirmed history of COVID infection (sensitivity 85%, 95%CI 70-94%), vs. 0/50 pre-pandemic controls (specificity 100% [95%CI 93-100%]). IgG levels were detected in 31/31 COVID-positive individuals tested ≥10 days after symptom onset (sensitivity 100%, 95%CI 89-100%). IgG titres rose during the 3 weeks post symptom onset and began to fall by 8 weeks, but remained above the detection threshold. Point estimates for the sensitivity of LFIA devices ranged from 55-70% versus RT-PCR and 65-85% versus ELISA, with specificity 95-100% and 93-100% respectively. Within the limits of the study size, the performance of most LFIA devices was similar. Conclusions: Currently available commercial LFIA devices do not perform sufficiently well for individual patient applications. However, ELISA can be calibrated to be specific for detecting and quantifying SARS-CoV-2 IgM and IgG and is highly sensitive for IgG from 10 days following first symptoms.

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