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Article: Air and environmental sampling for SARS-CoV-2 around hospitalized patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)

TitleAir and environmental sampling for SARS-CoV-2 around hospitalized patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)
Authors
KeywordsAirborne Infection
Bioaerosols
Operating Rooms
Issue Date2020
PublisherCambridge University Press. The Journal's web site is located at http://journals.cambridge.org/action/displayJournal?jid=ICE
Citation
Infection Control & Hospital Epidemiology, 2020, Epub 2020-06-08, p. 1-8 How to Cite?
AbstractBackground: The role of severe respiratory coronavirus virus 2 (SARS-CoV-2)–laden aerosols in the transmission of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) remains uncertain. Discordant findings of SARS-CoV-2 RNA in air samples were noted in early reports. Methods: Sampling of air close to 6 asymptomatic and symptomatic COVID-19 patients with and without surgical masks was performed with sampling devices using sterile gelatin filters. Frequently touched environmental surfaces near 21 patients were swabbed before daily environmental disinfection. The correlation between the viral loads of patients’ clinical samples and environmental samples was analyzed. Results: All air samples were negative for SARS-CoV-2 RNA in the 6 patients singly isolated inside airborne infection isolation rooms (AIIRs) with 12 air changes per hour. Of 377 environmental samples near 21 patients, 19 (5.0%) were positive by reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) assay, with a median viral load of 9.2 × 102 copies/mL (range, 1.1 × 102 to 9.4 × 104 copies/mL). The contamination rate was highest on patients’ mobile phones (6 of 77, 7.8%), followed by bed rails (4 of 74, 5.4%) and toilet door handles (4 of 76, 5.3%). We detected a significant correlation between viral load ranges in clinical samples and positivity rate of environmental samples (P < .001). Conclusion: SARS-CoV-2 RNA was not detectable by air samplers, which suggests that the airborne route is not the predominant mode of transmission of SARS-CoV-2. Wearing a surgical mask, appropriate hand hygiene, and thorough environmental disinfection are sufficient infection control measures for COVID-19 patients isolated singly in AIIRs. However, this conclusion may not apply during aerosol-generating procedures or in cohort wards with large numbers of COVID-19 patients.
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/285301
ISSN
2019 Impact Factor: 2.938
2015 SCImago Journal Rankings: 1.985
PubMed Central ID

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorCheng, VCC-
dc.contributor.authorWong, SC-
dc.contributor.authorChan, VWM-
dc.contributor.authorSo, SYC-
dc.contributor.authorChen, JHK-
dc.contributor.authorYip, CCY-
dc.contributor.authorChan, KH-
dc.contributor.authorChu, H-
dc.contributor.authorChung, TWH-
dc.contributor.authorSridhar, S-
dc.contributor.authorTo, KKW-
dc.contributor.authorChan, JFW-
dc.contributor.authorHung, IFN-
dc.contributor.authorHo, PL-
dc.contributor.authorYuen, KY-
dc.date.accessioned2020-08-18T03:52:11Z-
dc.date.available2020-08-18T03:52:11Z-
dc.date.issued2020-
dc.identifier.citationInfection Control & Hospital Epidemiology, 2020, Epub 2020-06-08, p. 1-8-
dc.identifier.issn0899-823X-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/285301-
dc.description.abstractBackground: The role of severe respiratory coronavirus virus 2 (SARS-CoV-2)–laden aerosols in the transmission of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) remains uncertain. Discordant findings of SARS-CoV-2 RNA in air samples were noted in early reports. Methods: Sampling of air close to 6 asymptomatic and symptomatic COVID-19 patients with and without surgical masks was performed with sampling devices using sterile gelatin filters. Frequently touched environmental surfaces near 21 patients were swabbed before daily environmental disinfection. The correlation between the viral loads of patients’ clinical samples and environmental samples was analyzed. Results: All air samples were negative for SARS-CoV-2 RNA in the 6 patients singly isolated inside airborne infection isolation rooms (AIIRs) with 12 air changes per hour. Of 377 environmental samples near 21 patients, 19 (5.0%) were positive by reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) assay, with a median viral load of 9.2 × 102 copies/mL (range, 1.1 × 102 to 9.4 × 104 copies/mL). The contamination rate was highest on patients’ mobile phones (6 of 77, 7.8%), followed by bed rails (4 of 74, 5.4%) and toilet door handles (4 of 76, 5.3%). We detected a significant correlation between viral load ranges in clinical samples and positivity rate of environmental samples (P < .001). Conclusion: SARS-CoV-2 RNA was not detectable by air samplers, which suggests that the airborne route is not the predominant mode of transmission of SARS-CoV-2. Wearing a surgical mask, appropriate hand hygiene, and thorough environmental disinfection are sufficient infection control measures for COVID-19 patients isolated singly in AIIRs. However, this conclusion may not apply during aerosol-generating procedures or in cohort wards with large numbers of COVID-19 patients.-
dc.languageeng-
dc.publisherCambridge University Press. The Journal's web site is located at http://journals.cambridge.org/action/displayJournal?jid=ICE-
dc.relation.ispartofInfection Control & Hospital Epidemiology-
dc.rightsInfection Control & Hospital Epidemiology. Copyright © Cambridge University Press.-
dc.rightsThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.-
dc.subjectAirborne Infection-
dc.subjectBioaerosols-
dc.subjectOperating Rooms-
dc.titleAir and environmental sampling for SARS-CoV-2 around hospitalized patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)-
dc.typeArticle-
dc.identifier.emailCheng, VCC: vcccheng@hkucc.hku.hk-
dc.identifier.emailWong, SC: shchwong@hku.hk-
dc.identifier.emailChen, JHK: jonchk@hku.hk-
dc.identifier.emailYip, CCY: yipcyril@hku.hk-
dc.identifier.emailChan, KH: chankh2@hkucc.hku.hk-
dc.identifier.emailChu, H: hinchu@hku.hk-
dc.identifier.emailSridhar, S: sid8998@hku.hk-
dc.identifier.emailTo, KKW: kelvinto@hku.hk-
dc.identifier.emailChan, JFW: jfwchan@hku.hk-
dc.identifier.emailHung, IFN: ivanhung@hkucc.hku.hk-
dc.identifier.emailHo, PL: plho@hku.hk-
dc.identifier.emailYuen, KY: kyyuen@hkucc.hku.hk-
dc.identifier.authorityYip, CCY=rp01721-
dc.identifier.authorityChan, KH=rp01921-
dc.identifier.authorityChu, H=rp02125-
dc.identifier.authoritySridhar, S=rp02249-
dc.identifier.authorityTo, KKW=rp01384-
dc.identifier.authorityChan, JFW=rp01736-
dc.identifier.authorityHung, IFN=rp00508-
dc.identifier.authorityHo, PL=rp00406-
dc.identifier.authorityYuen, KY=rp00366-
dc.description.naturepublished_or_final_version-
dc.identifier.doi10.1017/ice.2020.282-
dc.identifier.pmid32507114-
dc.identifier.pmcidPMC7327164-
dc.identifier.scopuseid_2-s2.0-85086245045-
dc.identifier.hkuros312820-
dc.identifier.volumeEpub 2020-06-08-
dc.identifier.spage1-
dc.identifier.epage8-
dc.publisher.placeUnited States-

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