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Among outpatients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) due to the severe acute respiratory coronavirus virus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) δ (delta) variant who did and did not receive 2 vaccine doses at 7 days after symptom onset, there was no difference in viral shedding (cycle threshold difference 0.59, 95% CI, −4.68 to 3.50; P = .77) with SARS-CoV-2 cultured from 2 (7%) of 28 and 1 (4%) of 26 outpatients, respectively.
An accurate estimate of the average number of hand hygiene opportunities per patient hour (HHO rate) is required to implement group electronic hand hygiene monitoring systems (GEHHMSs). We sought to identify predictors of HHOs to validate and implement a GEHHMS across a network of critical care units.
Multicenter, observational study (10 hospitals) followed by quality improvement intervention involving 24 critical care units across 12 hospitals in Ontario, Canada.
Critical care patient beds were randomized to receive 1 hour of continuous direct observation to determine the HHO rate. A Poisson regression model determined unit-level predictors of HHOs. Estimates of average HHO rates across different types of critical care units were derived and used to implement and evaluate use of GEHHMS.
During 2,812 hours of observation, we identified 25,417 HHOs. There was significant variability in HHO rate across critical care units. Time of day, day of the week, unit acuity, patient acuity, patient population and use of transmission-based precautions were significantly associated with HHO rate. Using unit-specific estimates of average HHO rate, aggregate HH adherence was 30.0% (1,084,329 of 3,614,908) at baseline with GEHHMS and improved to 38.5% (740,660 of 1,921,656) within 2 months of continuous feedback to units (P < .0001).
Unit-specific estimates based on known predictors of HHO rate enabled broad implementation of GEHHMS. Further longitudinal quality improvement efforts using this system are required to assess the impact of GEHHMS on both HH adherence and clinical outcomes within critically ill patient populations.
Widespread testing for severe acute respiratory coronavirus virus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is necessary to curb the spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), but testing is undermined when the only option is a nasopharyngeal swab. Self-collected swab techniques can overcome many of the disadvantages of a nasopharyngeal swab, but they require evaluation.
Three self-collected non-nasopharyngeal swab techniques (saline gargle, oral swab and combined oral-anterior nasal swab) were compared to a nasopharyngeal swab for SARS-CoV-2 detection at multiple COVID-19 assessment centers in Toronto, Canada. The performance characteristics of each test were assessed.
The adjusted sensitivity of the saline gargle was 0.90 (95% CI 0.86-0.94), the oral swab was 0.82 (95% CI, 0.72–0.89) and the combined oral–anterior nasal swab was 0.87 (95% CI, 0.77–0.93) compared to a nasopharyngeal swab, which demonstrated a sensitivity of ˜90% when all positive tests were the reference standard. The median cycle threshold values for the SARS-CoV-2 E-gene for concordant and discordant saline gargle specimens were 17 and 31 (P < .001), for the oral swabs these values were 17 and 28 (P < .001), and for oral–anterior nasal swabs these values were 18 and 31 (P = .007).
Self-collected saline gargle and an oral–anterior nasal swab have a similar sensitivity to a nasopharyngeal swab for the detection of SARS-CoV-2. These alternative collection techniques are cheap and can eliminate barriers to testing, particularly in underserved populations.
To compare sensitivity of specimens for COVID-19 diagnosis, we tested 151 nasopharyngeal/midturbinate swab pairs from 117 COVID-19 inpatients using reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). Sensitivity was 94% for nasopharyngeal and 75% for midturbinate swabs (P = .0001). In 88 nasopharyngeal/midturbinate pairs with matched saliva, sensitivity was 86% for nasopharyngeal swabs and 88% for combined midturbinate swabs/saliva.
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