More than one in ten COVID-19 patients infected in hospital in the first pandemic wave

More than one in 10 COVID-19 patients in 314 UK hospitals became infected after admission. Credit: Lancaster University

More than one in ten COVID-19 patients in 314 UK hospitals contracted the infection in hospital during the first pandemic wave, say researchers conducting the world’s largest study on severe COVID-19.

Research on Hospital Acquired Infections (HAI) was led by Lancaster University’s Dr Jonathan Read with colleagues from other UK universities, including the Universities of Liverpool, Edinburgh, Birmingham and Imperial College London, and is published in Lancet Today, Thursday, August 12.

The researchers examined the records of COVID-19 patients in UK hospitals enrolled in the International Consortium of Acute and Emerging Respiratory Infections (ISARIC) UK Clinical Characterization Protocol (CCP-UK) study, who became ill earlier. August 1, 2020.

They found that at least 11.1% of COVID-19 patients in 314 UK hospitals were infected after admission. The proportion of COVID-19 patients infected in the hospital also increased by 16-20% in mid-May 2020, long after the first wave’s peak in revenue.

The researchers said: “We estimate that between 5,699 and 11,862 patients admitted in the first wave became infected during their hospital stay. Unfortunately, this is likely to be an underestimate, as we do not include patients who may have been infected but who they were discharged earlier. They could be diagnosed. ”

Lancaster University lead author Dr. Jonathan Read said that “controlling viruses like SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19) has been difficult in the past, so the situation could have been much worse. However, infection control must remain a priority in hospitals and care facilities. “

Dr Chris Green from the University of Birmingham said: “There are likely a number of reasons why many patients became infected in these care settings. These include the large number of patients admitted to hospitals with facilities limited access to isolation of cases, limited access rapid and reliable diagnostic tests in the early stages of the outbreak, challenges around accessing and best use of PPE, our understanding of when patients are most infectious in their disease, some classification erroneous of cases due to presentation with atypical symptoms and an underestimation of the role of airborne transmission “.

There were marked differences in the number of infected patients in the hospital according to the type of care provided. Hospitals providing acute and general care had lower proportions of hospital-acquired infections (9.7%) than residential community-care hospitals (61.9%) and mental health hospitals (67.5%), reflecting outbreaks observed in nursing homes.

Professor Calum Semple, University of Liverpool, said: “Reasons for variation between settings providing the same type of care require urgent research to identify and promote best infection control practices. Investigation has now been commissioned. to find out what was done right and what lessons need to be learned to improve patient safety. “

Dr Anne Marie Docherty, University of Edinburgh, said: “The underlying reasons for these high transmission rates in hospitals at the peak of the first wave should be investigated so that we can improve safety and outcomes for our patients. Rates are considerably lower one year later, and people should not be discouraged from going to the hospital if they are unwell. ”


How COVID-19 Survival Improved in UK Hospitals During the First Wave


More information:
Jonathan M Read et al, Hospital acquired SARS-CoV-2 infection in the UK’s first COVID-19 pandemic wave, Lancet (2021). DOI: 10.1016 / S0140-6736 (21) 01786-4

Provided by Lancaster University


Citation: More than one in ten COVID-19 patients infected in hospital in the first pandemic wave (2021, August 13), recovered on August 13, 2021 from https://medicalxpress.com/news/2021-08- ten-covid-patients-infected- hospital.html

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