MEDICAL BLUNDERS : Hospital-Associated Transmission Are Major Cause Of Infections In China According To JAMA Study
More than forty hospital health care workers were infected with the novel coronavirus
by patients at a single Wuhan hospital in January, a new study has found, underscoring the risks to those at the frontlines of the growing epidemic.
An Overcrowded Hospital In China
In one incident, one patient who was admitted to the surgical department was presumed to have infected 10 health care workers, according to the paper that was authored by doctors at the Zhongnan Hospital of Wuhan University and published in the Journal of the American Medical Association
) on Friday.
Disturbingly, seventeen patients who were hospitalized for other reasons also became infected by the coronavirus
. A total of 138 patients got the virus in a period spanning January 1 to January 28, with hospital-associated transmission accounting for 41 percent of all cases.
The research study comes just hours after a Chinese doctor who was punished for raising the alarm about the coronavirus
died from the pathogen, sparking an outpouring of grief and anger over a worsening crisis that has now killed more than 725 people.
Dr Li Wenliang, 34, sent out a message about the new coronavirus
to colleagues on December 30 in Wuhan but was later among a group of people summoned by police for "rumor-mongering." Unfortunately, he later contracted the disease while treating a patient.
According to the the JAMA
study, of the 40 infected health care workers, 31 worked on general wards, seven in the emergency department, and two in the ICU.
The significant example of the patient presumed to have infected 10 health workers highlighted the high level of danger within hospitals during the first phase of the coronavirus
epidemic, even though overall it is currently estimated that each patient infects on average 2.2 others.
Dr Michael Head, a global health expert at the University of Southampton told Thailand Medical
News, "If true, then this confirms that some patients are likely to be far more infectious than others, and this poses further difficulties in managing their cases."
Healthcare and medical staff at the epicenter of the coronavirus
are overstretched and lack sufficient protective gear, the deputy governor of Hubei province has admitted.
Reference : Clinical Characteristics of 138 Hospitalized Patients With 2019 Novel Coronavirus–Infected Pneumonia in Wuhan, China, Dawei Wang, MD1
o Hu, MD1
; Chang Hu, MD1
; et al., JAMA.
Published online February 7, 2020. doi:10.1001/jama.2020.158, https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/fullarticle/2761044