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Original Article

SJEMed. 2023; 4(1): 263-267

The distribution of surface contamination with SARS-COV-2 in various parts of an emergency department at a tertiary care hospital in Dubai- a prospective study

Malik Zaka Ullah, Ayesha Maklai, Zebunnisa Sohail, Firas Jaafar Kareem Al Najjar, Maya Habous.


Objective: This study aimed to find if certain places are more contaminated by SARS COV-2 than the others in an Emergency Department (ED) of a tertiary care hospital.
Methods: This was a prospective cross-sectional study carried out at the tertiary care hospital of Dubai. The study was carried out over a course of 4 weeks. Total 50 swab samples were taken. Twenty five were collected from the “dirty” areas and twenty five from the “clean” areas. Patients who had a positive SARS-COV-2 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test in both areas were included in the study.
Results: From a total of 50 swabs collected, large number of swabs was collected from resuscitation and major treatment area (38% and 30%, respectively). Of total, positive SARS-COV-2 PCR was detected on 38% of swabs. Of which 44% were from dirty areas and 32% were from clean areas. Considering areas of ED positive SARS COV-2 PCR, it was detected majorly from zone 4 (50%) followed by major (40%) and minor treatment areas (33.3%), respectively.
Conclusion: The detection of the virus in 32% of the samples taken from clean areas emphasizes on the importance of using personal protective equipment and hand hygiene measures even when working in areas where patients have been triaged without the presence of symptoms suggestive of a COVID-19 infection.

Key words: Surface contamination, SARS-COV-2, emergency department, tertiary care hospital, Dubai.

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