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Rofo ; 193(5): 537-543, 2021 05.
Article in English, German | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1127197


PURPOSE: The recent COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in an increasing overload of the medical system. Healthcare workers (HCW) in radiology departments are exposed to a high infection risk similar to HCWs in the ICU or dedicated COVID wards. The goal of our paper is to evaluate the prevalence of IgG antibody against SARS-CoV-2 among radiology HCWs in two different hospitals and regions in Germany with a low and high COVID-19 prevalence and to compare it to the prevalence in other clinical personnel. Additionally, we assessed the number of radiological procedures performed in patients with a positive PCR test (C+) followed by a short review of the risk for nosocomial infections of radiology HCWs. MATERIALS AND METHODS: During the first COVID-19 wave between March and July 2020, we evaluated a region with one of the highest COVID-19 rates (776-1570/100 000) in Germany (Hospital A). Additionally, we assessed Hospital B in a region with a low prevalence (65/100 000). We tested the serum prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 IgG antibodies among the whole staff with a subgroup analysis for radiology in both hospitals. We calculated the total number of different radiological procedures performed in C+ patients. RESULTS: In Hospital A 594 PCR-proven C+ patients were treated resulting in 2723 radiological procedures. 24 % (n = 6) of the radiology technicians and 13.35 (n = 2) of radiologists had a positive IgG test. The rates were similar to positive rates in HCWs in COVID-19 wards and ICUs within the hospital. The most frequently performed procedures in C+ patients were chest X-rays (3.17/patient) and CT examinations (1.15/patient). In Hospital B 50 C+ patients were treated, resulting in 64 radiological procedures. None of the HCWs tested IgG positive. The most frequently performed examinations were also chest X-rays (1.04/patient) and CT (0.2/patient). CONCLUSION: HCWs in radiology have a high occupational infection risk similar to that of HCWs in ICUs and dedicated COVID wards. KEY POINTS: · The risk of acquiring COVID-19 increases with the amount of contact with infected individuals.. · The occupational risk of a SARS-CoV-2 infection for radiology staff is similar to that of nurses and physicians in COVID wards.. · Hygiene concepts and medical resources have to be adapted for further COVID outbreaks.. · Reporting of an occupational disease can be considered in the case of seropositive staff.. CITATION FORMAT: · Finkenzeller T, Lenhart S, Reinwald M et al. Risk to Radiology Staff for Occupational COVID-19 Infection in a High-Risk and a Low-Risk Region in Germany: Lessons from the "First Wave". Fortschr Röntgenstr 2021; 193: 537 - 543.

COVID-19/transmission , Cross Infection/etiology , Occupational Diseases/etiology , Radiologists , COVID-19/epidemiology , Cross Infection/epidemiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Evaluation Studies as Topic , Germany , Humans , Occupational Diseases/epidemiology , Radiology Department, Hospital/statistics & numerical data , Risk