Infectious Disease

Risk of the transmission of SARS-CoV-2 among roommates in the hospital “quite high”

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Karan, Klompas and Rhee report that they have received numerous grants and other fees relevant to the study. Please see the study for all authors relevant financial information.

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Almost 40% of patients who shared a room with a patient with SARS-CoV-2 in a Boston hospital became infected within 14 days, according to study results published in Clinical Infectious Diseases.

The researchers concluded that “the nosocomial spread of SARS-CoV-2 is relatively rare with standard infection protocols”, but “there is a high risk of transmission for patients in shared hospital rooms when their roommate is acutely infected”.

Abraar Karan Pullquote

Three of the researchers – Abraar Karan, MD, MPH, DTM & H, an internal medicine physician at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School, and Brigham & Women’s Epidemiologists Michael Klompas, MD, MPH, and Chanu Rhee, MD, MPH answered questions about the course.

“The risk of COVID-19 spreading is quite high when you are in a room with someone contagious with the virus for several hours,” they told Healio. “Remember, this type of scenario can happen at home – it can happen in workplaces, it can happen anywhere and it can spread even before people show symptoms. In fact, hospitals have better ventilation than the community. This is another piece of data that tells us to be extra careful, especially during a surge in the virus. “

Michael Klompas

Chanu Rhee

The researchers analyzed the transmission of SARS-CoV-2 in 11,290 patients who shared hospital rooms between September 2020 and April 2021. They calculated the percentage of exposed roommates who had a positive COVID-19 test within 2 weeks of exposure and analyzed risk factors for transmission.

A total of 25 patients tested positive for SARS-CoV-2, eight of whom tested via the hospital’s repeat testing policy, seven via cluster exams, four via tests for new symptoms, four via admission tests, one via pre-procedural tests, and one during re-admission.

Of 31 patients who shared a room with a patient with SARS-CoV-2, 12 (39%) tested positive for the virus.

Karan, Klompas and Rhee said it was “essential” for clinicians to consider that the virus could spread in hospitals, but noted that the likelihood of good infection control guidelines is low.

“Hospitals must balance the need for basic patient care against the risk of transmission in shared patient rooms. Therefore, during periods of high community incidence (or hospitalized outbreaks), risk reduction strategies such as rapid tests, serial tests, and only vaccinated patients should be placed in shared rooms, ”they said.

References:

KaranA, et al. Clin Infect Dis. 2021; doi: 10.1093 / cid / ciab564.

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