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An evaluation of a pilot of daily testing of SARS-CoV-2 contacts in acute hospital and ambulance trusts in England

Bow, Steven MA; Goddard, Ashley; Cope, Gillian; Sharp, Nick; Schick, Jon; Woods, Claire; Jeffery, Katie; ... Tunkel, Sarah; + view all (2022) An evaluation of a pilot of daily testing of SARS-CoV-2 contacts in acute hospital and ambulance trusts in England. Public Health 10.1016/j.puhe.2022.05.013. (In press). Green open access

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Abstract

OBJECTIVES: Healthcare worker (HCW) SARS-CoV-2 contacts in England have been required to quarantine, creating staff shortages. We piloted daily contact testing (DCT) to assess its feasibility as an alternative. STUDY DESIGN: Observational service evaluation. METHODS: We conducted an observational service evaluation of seven-day daily contact testing using antigen lateral flow devices, (LFDs) at four acute hospital trusts and one ambulance trust in England. Mixed methods were employed, utilising aggregate and individual-level test monitoring data, semi-structured interviews, and a survey of eligible contacts. RESULTS: In total, 138 HCWs were identified as contacts of a confirmed SARS-CoV-2 case. Of these, 111 (80%) consented to daily LFD testing, of whom 82 (74%) completed the required programme without interruption, and 12 (11%) completed with interruption. Fifty-eight (52%) participants and two (7·4%) non-participants completed the survey. In total, 28 interviews were conducted with participants, site and infection control leads, and union representatives. One participant tested positive on LFD and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test. Three participants tested positive on PCR but not LFD. DCT was well-accepted by trusts and staff. Participants reported no relaxation of their infection prevention and control behaviours. No incidents of transmission were detected. An estimated 729 potential days of work absence were averted. CONCLUSIONS: DCT can be acceptably operated in a healthcare setting, averting quarantine-related work absences in HCW SARS-CoV-2 contacts.

Type: Article
Title: An evaluation of a pilot of daily testing of SARS-CoV-2 contacts in acute hospital and ambulance trusts in England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1016/j.puhe.2022.05.013
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.puhe.2022.05.013
Language: English
Additional information: © 2022 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ltd on behalf of The Royal Society for Public Health under a Creative Commons license (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
Keywords: COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2, daily contact testing, lateral flow, healthcare workers
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute for Global Health > Infection and Population Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute for Global Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Div of Infection and Immunity
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10151217
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