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1.
PLoS Med ; 18(10): e1003816, 2021 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1463303

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Nosocomial spread of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has been widely reported, but the transmission pathways among patients and healthcare workers (HCWs) are unclear. Identifying the risk factors and drivers for these nosocomial transmissions is critical for infection prevention and control interventions. The main aim of our study was to quantify the relative importance of different transmission pathways of SARS-CoV-2 in the hospital setting. METHODS AND FINDINGS: This is an observational cohort study using data from 4 teaching hospitals in Oxfordshire, United Kingdom, from January to October 2020. Associations between infectious SARS-CoV-2 individuals and infection risk were quantified using logistic, generalised additive and linear mixed models. Cases were classified as community- or hospital-acquired using likely incubation periods of 3 to 7 days. Of 66,184 patients who were hospitalised during the study period, 920 had a positive SARS-CoV-2 PCR test within the same period (1.4%). The mean age was 67.9 (±20.7) years, 49.2% were females, and 68.5% were from the white ethnic group. Out of these, 571 patients had their first positive PCR tests while hospitalised (62.1%), and 97 of these occurred at least 7 days after admission (10.5%). Among the 5,596 HCWs, 615 (11.0%) tested positive during the study period using PCR or serological tests. The mean age was 39.5 (±11.1) years, 78.9% were females, and 49.8% were nurses. For susceptible patients, 1 day in the same ward with another patient with hospital-acquired SARS-CoV-2 was associated with an additional 7.5 infections per 1,000 susceptible patients (95% credible interval (CrI) 5.5 to 9.5/1,000 susceptible patients/day) per day. Exposure to an infectious patient with community-acquired Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) or to an infectious HCW was associated with substantially lower infection risks (2.0/1,000 susceptible patients/day, 95% CrI 1.6 to 2.2). As for HCW infections, exposure to an infectious patient with hospital-acquired SARS-CoV-2 or to an infectious HCW were both associated with an additional 0.8 infection per 1,000 susceptible HCWs per day (95% CrI 0.3 to 1.6 and 0.6 to 1.0, respectively). Exposure to an infectious patient with community-acquired SARS-CoV-2 was associated with less than half this risk (0.2/1,000 susceptible HCWs/day, 95% CrI 0.2 to 0.2). These assumptions were tested in sensitivity analysis, which showed broadly similar results. The main limitations were that the symptom onset dates and HCW absence days were not available. CONCLUSIONS: In this study, we observed that exposure to patients with hospital-acquired SARS-CoV-2 is associated with a substantial infection risk to both HCWs and other hospitalised patients. Infection control measures to limit nosocomial transmission must be optimised to protect both staff and patients from SARS-CoV-2 infection.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Community-Acquired Infections , Cross Infection/epidemiology , Health Personnel , Hospitals , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional , Infectious Disease Transmission, Professional-to-Patient , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/transmission , Cohort Studies , Female , Hospitalization , Hospitals/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Infection Control , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/statistics & numerical data , Infectious Disease Transmission, Professional-to-Patient/statistics & numerical data , Male , Middle Aged , Nurses , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2 , United Kingdom/epidemiology
2.
Medicine (Baltimore) ; 100(25): e26433, 2021 Jun 25.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1410303

ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: The subclinical severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection rate in hospitals during the pandemic remains unclear. To evaluate the effectiveness of our hospital's current nosocomial infection control measures, we conducted a serological survey of anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies (immunoglobulin [Ig] G) among the staff of our hospital, which is treating coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) patients.The study design was cross-sectional. We measured anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgG in the participants using a laboratory-based quantitative test (Abbott immunoassay), which has a sensitivity and specificity of 100% and 99.6%, respectively. To investigate the factors associated with seropositivity, we also obtained some information from the participants with an anonymous questionnaire. We invited 1133 staff members in our hospital, and 925 (82%) participated. The mean age of the participants was 40.0 ±â€Š11.8 years, and most were women (80.0%). According to job title, there were 149 medical doctors or dentists (16.0%), 489 nurses (52.9%), 140 medical technologists (14.2%), 49 healthcare providers (5.3%), and 98 administrative staff (10.5%). The overall prevalence of seropositivity for anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgG was 0.43% (4/925), which was similar to the control seroprevalence of 0.54% (16/2970) in the general population in Osaka during the same period according to a government survey conducted with the same assay. Seropositive rates did not significantly differ according to job title, exposure to suspected or confirmed COVID-19 patients, or any other investigated factors.The subclinical SARS-CoV-2 infection rate in our hospital was not higher than that in the general population under our nosocomial infection control measures.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/blood , Asymptomatic Infections/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Health Personnel/statistics & numerical data , Seroepidemiologic Studies , Adult , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/transmission , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Hospitals, Urban/organization & administration , Hospitals, Urban/standards , Hospitals, Urban/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Immunoglobulin G/blood , Infection Control/organization & administration , Infection Control/standards , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/statistics & numerical data , Japan/epidemiology , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics/statistics & numerical data , Prevalence , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Surveys and Questionnaires/statistics & numerical data
6.
Curr Opin Infect Dis ; 34(4): 372-383, 2021 08 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1297451

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: An estimated four to 11% of reported coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases occurs in healthcare personnel (HCP). HCP are at high risk of acquiring and transmitting severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) given their close contact with individuals with recognized and unrecognized COVID-19. We summarize the literature to date describing the epidemiology, identifying risk factors associated with COVID-19, and analyzing clinical characteristics and outcomes of SARS-CoV-2 infection in HCP. RECENT FINDINGS: The prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 antibodies among HCP ranges from 0.7 to 45%. Although there is heterogeneity in the seroprevalence rate reported in the literature, HCP may be at increased risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection from exposure to patients with COVID-19. The literature supports that this can be minimized with adequate personal protective equipment (PPE) supply, proper hand hygiene, appropriate PPE use, and other infection prevention measures. In addition, infections in HCP are commonly acquired in the community as well as in nonclinical care settings including break rooms or work rooms. SUMMARY: While much focus has been on minimizing patient-to-HCP transmission of SARS-CoV-2, additional efforts are needed to prevent exposures in nonclinical care settings and in the community.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , Health Personnel , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/statistics & numerical data , Occupational Exposure , SARS-CoV-2 , COVID-19/prevention & control , Humans , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Occupational Exposure/adverse effects , Pandemics , Public Health Surveillance , Risk Factors , Seroepidemiologic Studies
7.
Behav Neurol ; 2021: 6655103, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1286758

ABSTRACT

This study is aimed at assessing differences in basic attentional functioning between substantial and minimal work-related exposure to COVID-19 patients in professionals working in a tertiary referral hospital in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Therefore, hospital employees performed a Continuous Visual Attention Test. This test consisted of a 90-second Go/No-Go task with 72 (80%) targets and 18 (20%) nontargets. For each participant, reaction time and intraindividual variability of reaction times of all correct target responses, as well as the number of omission and commission errors, were evaluated. Participants were divided into 2 groups based on their exposure to COVID-19 patients (substantial versus minimal exposure). The substantial exposure group consisted of participants with 24 hours/week or more direct contact with COVID-19 patients. This cut-off was based on the clear division between professionals working and not working with COVID-19 patients and considered that 12-hour and 24-hour daily shifts are common for hospital employees in Brazil. A MANCOVA was performed to examine between-group differences, using age, sleep quality, sex, education level, previous COVID-19 infection, and profession as covariates. Of 124 participants, 80 had substantial exposure and 44 had minimal exposure to COVID-19. The overall MANCOVA reached statistical significance (P = 0.048). Post hoc ANCOVA analysis showed that the substantial exposure group had a statistically significantly higher intraindividual variability of reaction time of all correct target responses (P = 0.017, Cohen's δ = -0.55). This result remained after removing those with a previous COVID-19 infection (P = 0.010, Cohen's δ = -0.64) and after matching groups for sample size (P = 0.004, Cohen's δ = -0.81). No other variables reached statistical significance. Concluding, hospital professionals with a substantial level of exposure to patients with COVID-19 show a significant attention decrement and, thus, may be at a higher risk of accidental SARS-CoV-2 infection.


Subject(s)
Attention , COVID-19/therapy , COVID-19/transmission , Health Personnel/psychology , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional , Tertiary Care Centers , Adult , Brazil/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Female , Humans , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/statistics & numerical data , Male , Middle Aged , Reaction Time , SARS-CoV-2 , Work Schedule Tolerance , Young Adult
10.
Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol ; 42(6): 746-750, 2021 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1263424

ABSTRACT

A questionnaire was distributed to hospitals in Tokyo (N = 38) regarding their preparedness against and in-facility transmission of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). As of May 31, 2020, 284 HCP had contracted COVID-19, and in-facility COVID-19 transmission occurred at 13 hospitals, negatively impacting hospital functions and patient care.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Cross Infection/epidemiology , Personnel, Hospital/psychology , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/therapy , COVID-19/transmission , Cross Infection/prevention & control , Cross Infection/therapy , Cross Infection/transmission , Female , Humans , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/statistics & numerical data , Male , Middle Aged , Personnel, Hospital/statistics & numerical data , Surveys and Questionnaires , Tokyo/epidemiology , Young Adult
11.
JMIR Public Health Surveill ; 7(6): e27189, 2021 06 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1256256

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: During the COVID-19 pandemic, swab tests proved to be effective in containing the infection and served as a means for early diagnosis and contact tracing. However, little evidence exists regarding the correct timing for the execution of the swab test, especially for asymptomatic individuals and health care workers. OBJECTIVE: The objective of this study was to analyze changes in the positive findings over time in individual SARS-CoV-2 swab tests during a health surveillance program. METHODS: The study was conducted with 2071 health care workers at the University Hospital of Verona, with a known date of close contact with a patient with COVID-19, between February 29 and April 17, 2020. The health care workers underwent a health surveillance program with repeated swab tests to track their virological status. A generalized additive mixed model was used to investigate how the probability of a positive test result changes over time since the last known date of close contact, in an overall sample of individuals who tested positive for COVID-19 and in a subset of individuals with an initial negative swab test finding before being proven positive, to assess different surveillance time intervals. RESULTS: Among the 2071 health care workers in this study, 191 (9.2%) tested positive for COVID-19, and 103 (54%) were asymptomatic with no differences based on sex or age. Among 49 (25.7%) cases, the initial swab test yielded negative findings after close contact with a patient with COVID-19. Sex, age, symptoms, and the time of sampling were not different between individuals with an initial negative swab test finding and those who initially tested positive after close contact. In the overall sample, the estimated probability of testing positive was 0.74 on day 1 after close contact, which increased to 0.77 between days 5 and 8. In the 3 different scenarios for scheduled repeated testing intervals (3, 5, and 7 days) in the subgroup of individuals with an initially negative swab test finding, the probability peaked on the sixth, ninth and tenth, and 13th and 14th days, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: Swab tests can initially yield false-negative outcomes. The probability of testing positive increases from day 1, peaking between days 5 and 8 after close contact with a patient with COVID-19. Early testing, especially in this final time window, is recommended together with a health surveillance program scheduled in close intervals.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/statistics & numerical data , COVID-19/diagnosis , Health Personnel/statistics & numerical data , Adult , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , Contact Tracing/methods , False Negative Reactions , Female , Humans , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/statistics & numerical data , Italy/epidemiology , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Time Factors
12.
J Patient Saf ; 17(4): 323-330, 2021 06 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1231053

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Although recommendations to prevent COVID-19 healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) have been proposed, data on their effectivity are currently limited. OBJECTIVE: The aim was to evaluate the effectivity of a program of control and prevention of COVID-19 in an academic general hospital in Spain. METHODS: We captured the number of COVID-19 cases and the type of contact that occurred in hospitalized patients and healthcare personnel (HCP). To evaluate the impact of the continuous use of a surgical mask among HCP, the number of patients with COVID-19 HAIs and accumulated incidence of HCP with COVID-19 was compared between the preintervention and intervention periods. RESULTS: Two hundred fifty-two patients with COVID-19 have been admitted to the hospital. Seven of them had an HAI origin (6 in the preintervention period and 1 in the intervention period). One hundred forty-two HCP were infected with SARS-CoV-2. Of them, 22 (15.5%) were attributed to healthcare (2 in the emergency department and none in the critical care departments), and 120 (84.5%) were attributed to social relations in the workplace or during their non-work-related personal interactions. The accumulated incidence during the preintervention period was 22.3 for every 1000 HCP and 8.2 for every 1000 HCP during the intervention period. The relative risk was 0.37 (95% confidence interval, 0.25 to 0.55) and the attributable risk was -0.014 (95% confidence interval, -0.020 to -0.009). CONCLUSIONS: A program of control and prevention of HAIs complemented with the recommendation for the continuous use of a surgical mask in the workplace and social environments of HCP effectively decreased the risk of COVID-19 HAIs in admitted patients and HCP.


Subject(s)
Academic Medical Centers , COVID-19/prevention & control , Cross Infection/prevention & control , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Adult , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , Cross Infection/epidemiology , Female , Humans , Incidence , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/statistics & numerical data , Male , Masks/statistics & numerical data , Middle Aged , Personnel, Hospital/statistics & numerical data , Program Evaluation , Risk Assessment/statistics & numerical data , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Spain/epidemiology
13.
Phys Ther ; 101(8)2021 08 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1221482

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: The purpose of this study was to explore the prevalence, personal- and work-related exposures, and signs and symptoms among physical therapists during the first wave of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in Italy. METHODS: This cross-sectional, survey-based study collected demographic and exposure data from physical therapists from April to May 2020. All physical therapists working in inpatient and outpatient care in Italy were eligible. A self-administered questionnaire was distributed among all eligible physical therapists to collect (1) demographic characteristics, (2-3) personal- and work-related exposures, and (4) signs and symptoms of COVID-19. Factors associated with a COVID-19-positive nasopharyngeal swab (NPS) were explored through logistic regression models and multivariate methods. RESULTS: A total of 15,566 respondents completed the survey, with a response rate of 43.3%, achieving high statistical precision (99% CI, 1% type I error). Among physical therapists who received NPS testing, 13.1% (95% CI = 12.1-14.1%) had a positive result, with a peak reached in March 2020 (36%). The top 5 symptoms were fatigue and tiredness (69.1%), loss of smell (64.5%), aches and pains (60.8%), loss of taste (58.3%), and headache (51.1%). No symptoms were reported by 8.9%. Working in a health care institution (odds ratio [OR] = 12.0; 95% CI = 7.8-18.4), being reallocated to a different unit (OR = 1.9; 95% CI = 1.3-2.7), and changing job tasks (OR = 1.6; 95% CI = 1.2-2.3) increased the risk of being COVID-19 positive. In therapists with a confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19, comorbidities were associated with male sex and age older than 51 years. CONCLUSION: During the first wave in Italy, almost 1 out of 7 physical therapists tested positive on the COVID-19 NPS test. Considering personal- and work-related exposures, health care organizations should adopt prevention measures and adequate preparedness to prevent high rate of infections during future pandemics. IMPACT: This is the largest investigation about the spread of and main risk factors for COVID-19 in the physical therapy field.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/statistics & numerical data , Occupational Exposure/statistics & numerical data , Physical Therapists , Adult , Aged , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , Prevalence , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2 , Surveys and Questionnaires , Young Adult
14.
Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol ; 42(4): 381-387, 2021 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1189143

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To characterize associations between exposures within and outside the medical workplace with healthcare personnel (HCP) SARS-CoV-2 infection, including the effect of various forms of respiratory protection. DESIGN: Case-control study. SETTING: We collected data from international participants via an online survey. PARTICIPANTS: In total, 1,130 HCP (244 cases with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19, and 886 controls healthy throughout the pandemic) from 67 countries not meeting prespecified exclusion (ie, healthy but not working, missing workplace exposure data, COVID symptoms without lab confirmation) were included in this study. METHODS: Respondents were queried regarding workplace exposures, respiratory protection, and extra-occupational activities. Odds ratios for HCP infection were calculated using multivariable logistic regression and sensitivity analyses controlling for confounders and known biases. RESULTS: HCP infection was associated with non-aerosol-generating contact with COVID-19 patients (adjusted OR, 1.4; 95% CI, 1.04-1.9; P = .03) and extra-occupational exposures including gatherings of ≥10 people, patronizing restaurants or bars, and public transportation (adjusted OR range, 3.1-16.2). Respirator use during aerosol-generating procedures (AGPs) was associated with lower odds of HCP infection (adjusted OR, 0.4; 95% CI, 0.2-0.8, P = .005), as was exposure to intensive care and dedicated COVID units, negative pressure rooms, and personal protective equipment (PPE) observers (adjusted OR range, 0.4-0.7). CONCLUSIONS: COVID-19 transmission to HCP was associated with medical exposures currently considered lower-risk and multiple extra-occupational exposures, and exposures associated with proper use of appropriate PPE were protective. Closer scrutiny of infection control measures surrounding healthcare activities and medical settings considered lower risk, and continued awareness of the risks of public congregation, may reduce the incidence of HCP infection.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/transmission , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Adult , Aged , COVID-19/prevention & control , Case-Control Studies , Female , Global Health/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/statistics & numerical data , Logistic Models , Male , Middle Aged , Occupational Exposure/prevention & control , Occupational Exposure/statistics & numerical data , Personal Protective Equipment/statistics & numerical data , Personal Protective Equipment/virology , Respiratory Protective Devices/statistics & numerical data , Respiratory Protective Devices/virology , Young Adult
15.
Crit Care Med ; 49(7): 1159-1168, 2021 07 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1145199

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: To assess the risk of coronavirus transmission to healthcare workers performing aerosol-generating procedures and the potential benefits of personal protective equipment during these procedures. DATA SOURCES: MEDLINE, EMBASE, and Cochrane CENTRAL were searched using a combination of related MeSH terms and keywords. STUDY SELECTION: Cohort studies and case controls investigating common anesthetic and critical care aerosol-generating procedures and transmission of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 1, Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus, and severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 to healthcare workers were included for quantitative analysis. DATA EXTRACTION: Qualitative and quantitative data on the transmission of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 1, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, and Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus to healthcare workers via aerosol-generating procedures in anesthesia and critical care were collected independently. The Risk Of Bias In Non-randomized Studies - of Interventions tool was used to assess the risk of bias of included studies. DATA SYNTHESIS: Seventeen studies out of 2,676 yielded records were included for meta-analyses. Endotracheal intubation (odds ratio, 6.69, 95% CI, 3.81-11.72; p < 0.001), noninvasive ventilation (odds ratio, 3.65; 95% CI, 1.86-7.19; p < 0.001), and administration of nebulized medications (odds ratio, 10.03; 95% CI, 1.98-50.69; p = 0.005) were found to increase the odds of healthcare workers contracting severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 1 or severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2. The use of N95 masks (odds ratio, 0.11; 95% CI, 0.03-0.39; p < 0.001), gowns (odds ratio, 0.59; 95% CI, 0.48-0.73; p < 0.001), and gloves (odds ratio, 0.39; 95% CI, 0.29-0.53; p < 0.001) were found to be significantly protective of healthcare workers from contracting severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 1 or severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2. CONCLUSIONS: Specific aerosol-generating procedures are high risk for the transmission of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 1 and severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 from patients to healthcare workers. Personal protective equipment reduce the odds of contracting severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 1 and severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2.


Subject(s)
Aerosols , Coronavirus Infections/transmission , Critical Care , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/statistics & numerical data , Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus , SARS Virus , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , Observational Studies as Topic , Odds Ratio , Personal Protective Equipment , Protective Factors , Risk Factors
16.
J Laryngol Otol ; 135(3): 246-249, 2021 Mar.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1122049

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Concerns have emerged regarding infection transmission during flexible nasoendoscopy. METHODS: Information was gathered prospectively on flexible nasoendoscopy procedures performed between March and June 2020. Patients and healthcare workers were followed up to assess for coronavirus disease 2019 development. One-sided 97.5 per cent Poisson confidence intervals were calculated for upper limits of risk where zero events were observed. RESULTS: A total of 286 patients were recruited. The most common indication for flexible nasoendoscopy was investigation of 'red flag' symptoms (67 per cent). Forty-seven patients (16 per cent, 95 per cent confidence interval = 13-21 per cent) had suspicious findings on flexible nasoendoscopy requiring further investigation. Twenty patients (7.1 per cent, 95 per cent confidence interval = 4.4-11 per cent) had new cancer diagnoses. Zero coronavirus disease 2019 infections were recorded in the 273 patients. No. 27 endoscopists (the doctors and nurses who carried out the procedures) were followed up.The risk of developing coronavirus disease 2019 after flexible nasoendoscopy was determined to be 0-1.3 per cent. CONCLUSION: The risk of coronavirus disease 2019 transmission associated with performing flexible nasoendoscopy in asymptomatic patients, while using appropriate personal protective equipment, is very low. Additional data are required to confirm these findings in the setting of further disease surges.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , Endoscopy/adverse effects , Infection Control/organization & administration , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/statistics & numerical data , Adult , COVID-19/prevention & control , Endoscopy/instrumentation , Female , Humans , Ireland , Male , Patient Selection , Personal Protective Equipment , Prospective Studies , Retrospective Studies , Risk Assessment
17.
Ann R Coll Surg Engl ; 103(5): 354-359, 2021 May.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1121418

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: The initial intercollegiate surgical guidance from the UK during the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in significant changes to practice. Avoidance of laparoscopy was recommended, to reduce aerosol generation and risk of virus transmission. Evidence on the safety profile of laparoscopy during the pandemic is lacking. This study compares patient outcomes and risk to staff from laparoscopic and open gastrointestinal operations during the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: Single-centre retrospective study of gastrointestinal operations performed during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic. Demographic, comorbidity, perioperative and survival data were collected from electronic medical records and supplemented with patient symptoms reported at telephone follow up. Outcomes assessed were: patient mortality, illness among staff, patient COVID-19 rates, length of hospital stay and postdischarge symptomatology. RESULTS: A total of 73 patients with median age of 56 years were included; 55 (75%) and 18 (25%) underwent laparoscopic and open surgery, respectively. All-cause mortality was 5% (4/73), was related to COVID-19 in all cases, with no mortality after laparoscopic surgery. A total of 14 staff members developed COVID-19 symptoms within 2 weeks, with no significant difference between laparoscopic and open surgery (10 vs 4; p=0.331). Median length of stay was shorter in the laparoscopic versus the open group (4.5 vs 9.9 days; p=0.011), and postdischarge symptomatology across 15 symptoms was similar between groups (p=0.135-0.814). CONCLUSIONS: With appropriate protective measures, laparoscopic surgery is safe for patients and staff during the COVID-19 pandemic. The laparoscopic approach maintains an advantage of shorter length of hospital stay compared with open surgery.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Digestive System Surgical Procedures/methods , Gastrointestinal Diseases/surgery , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/statistics & numerical data , Laparoscopy/methods , Postoperative Complications/epidemiology , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Cause of Death , Child , Conversion to Open Surgery/statistics & numerical data , Elective Surgical Procedures , Emergencies , Female , Health Personnel/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Laparotomy/methods , Length of Stay , Male , Middle Aged , Mortality , Operative Time , Retrospective Studies , Risk , SARS-CoV-2 , Treatment Outcome , United Kingdom , Young Adult
19.
J Coll Physicians Surg Pak ; 30(1): S32-S34, 2021 Jan.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1112946

ABSTRACT

Ophthalmology is a specialty which involves close contact with patients. Personal protective equipment (PPE) along with modifications in examination techniques and equipment are needed to avoid spread of coronavirus infectious disease (COVID-19) to health professionals. This communication aims to highlight and critically analyse the measures suggested to control this spread. We also highlighted our experience with protective gear modifications. As with any practice, triage is cornerstone. Use of disinfectants, good personal hygiene practices and PPE for patients and staff, must be adopted for safe ophthalmology practices. Key Words: COVID-19, Ophthalmology, Personal protective equipment (PPE).


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Eye Diseases/epidemiology , Infection Control/methods , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Ophthalmology/methods , Pandemics , Personal Protective Equipment , COVID-19/transmission , Comorbidity , Humans , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/statistics & numerical data
20.
J Hosp Infect ; 111: 107-116, 2021 May.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1108424

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: During the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, healthcare workers (HCWs) are being exposed to infection both at work and in their communities. Determining where HCWs might have been infected is challenging based on epidemiological data alone. At Akershus University Hospital, Norway, several clusters of possible intra-hospital SARS-CoV-2 transmission were identified based on routine contact tracing. AIM: To determine whether clusters of suspected intra-hospital SARS-CoV-2 transmission could be resolved by combining whole genome sequencing (WGS) of SARS-CoV-2 with contact tracing data. METHODS: Epidemiological data were collected during routine contact tracing of polymerase chain reaction-confirmed SARS-CoV-2-positive HCWs. Possible outbreaks were identified as wards with two or more infected HCWs defined as close contacts who tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 less than three weeks apart. Viral RNA from naso-/oropharyngeal samples underwent nanopore sequencing in direct compliance to the ARTIC Network protocol. FINDINGS: Five outbreaks were suspected from contact tracing. Viral consensus sequences from 24 HCWs, two patients, and seven anonymous samples were analysed. Two outbreaks were confirmed, one refuted, and two remained undetermined. One new potential outbreak was discovered. CONCLUSION: Combined with epidemiological data, nanopore WGS was a useful tool for investigating intra-hospital SARS-CoV-2 transmission. WGS helped to resolve questions about possible outbreaks and to guide local infection prevention and control measures.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/transmission , Health Personnel/statistics & numerical data , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/statistics & numerical data , Occupational Diseases/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Whole Genome Sequencing , Adult , COVID-19/epidemiology , Female , Genome, Viral , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Nanopores , Norway/epidemiology
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