Good Afternoon Valued Clients and Colleagues! It is my prayer that you are doing WELL as we continue to navigate COVID-19. This week’s update will be a little different as the guidance hasn’t changed much over this past week for preventing and containing COVID-19, however, the public response has changed from stay at home to public protests. Let’s look at this a bit closer.
How Serious is COVID-19?
• For those who are arguing this is just as bad as the flu, look at the following epi-curves for Influenza and COVID-19. As you can tell, the steep curve with COVID-19 is quite a contrast from influenza. Most cases and deaths from COVID-19 have occurred in the last 18 days!!
• Compare the cases of influenza, up to 56 million to COVID-19 of less than 1 million, and yet the deaths for COVID-19 are nearly the same if not more. Social distancing IS critical to slowing the spread of this virus. Keep implementing the CDC guidance, it is working!
Personal Protective Equipment:
- We are hearing more and more about gown shortages in healthcare settings.
- If you are short, reach out to your local health department. Many have a PPE form that can be filled out weekly to obtain supplies (each state health department is different).
- Consider using reusable gowns as single use and laundering them.
- If you are in need of N-95 fit testing, you can contact Karin Pena, PenaK@cintas.com, with CINTAS.
- All healthcare staff should be wearing a face mask. We at IPCWell, have noticed that many healthcare workers are touching their mask often to make adjustments. Instruct your staff, to conduct hand hygiene before and after adjusting their mask to avoid contamination.
Lab Testing/ Antibody Testing:
- Continue testing, testing, testing. However, be mindful that not all labs are created equal. Sensitivities are low (true positives). We have been communicating with a Physician working in the COVID-19 positive ICU department in New York’s Bellevue Hospital. He suggested also looking at the following labs as these are most common for COVID-19 positive cases: Absolute Lymphocytes, D-Dimer (Outcome predictor…have seen as high as 40-50,000), Ferritin, LDH, CRP Procalcitonin. These are ones we follow as needed: IL-6 CPK (effect on muscles), PT/PTT, Fibrinogen if D-Dimer elevated.
- On Monday April 20th, Dr. Anthony Fauci stated, “There is a reasonable assumption, that if you have an antibody, that you are protected against reinfection, but that has NOT been proven for this particular virus”.
- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommends that health care providers continue to use serological tests intended to detect antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 to help identify people who may have been exposed to the SARS-CoV-2 virus or have recovered from the COVID-19 infection.
- The FDA is not aware of an antibody test that has been validated for diagnosis of SARS-CoV-2 infection.
- Be aware that not all marketed serological tests have been evaluated by the FDA. The FDA’s authorized tests, including serological tests, are listed on the Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) page.