How to Manage the COVID-19 Diffusion in the Angiography Suite: Experiences and Results of an Italian Interventional Radiology Unit
Introduction: The management of the diffusion of Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic represents a massive problem for healthcare systems worldwide and Interventional Radiology (IR) is a fundamental hospital unit which must continue to provide its service. The aim of this article is to summarize the preventive measures taken in our IR unit and to report the results of these measures over a 7 weeks period. Material and Methods: Between the 25th of February, when we started to apply the recommended containing measures, and the 6th of April 2020, when all the IR staff started to undergo nasopharyngeal and oropharyngeal swabs screening, a total of 25 healthcare operators worked at our IR unit. Operators who, during this period, also worked in other hospital units such as diagnostic emergency department or other healthcare facilities, were excluded. Nasopharyngeal and oropharyngeal swabs screening and blood samples for specific SARS-CoV-2 IgG-IgM were retrospectively evaluated. Results: The overall procedures number decreased by a rate of 33% and twenty-three (16%) were performed in confirmed or strongly suspected COVID-19 patients. Two procedures were performed in non-suspected ones, who revealed positive in the following hospitalization days. Seventeen operators were included in the study. Only one of them resulted positive at the swabs, with an estimated infection rate in our IR unit of 6%. Specific SARS-CoV-2 IgG-IgM resulted negative in all the operators included. Conclusion: Our experience demonstrates that applying adequate measures to limit SARS-CoV-2 infection spread can efficiently reduce the viral transmission among IR healthcare workers.
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