How to control a COVID-19 outbreak in a nursing home?

Repeated general screening and cohort isolation were the mainstays of successful COVID-19 outbreak control in a large nursing home.

Manuel Krone, Annette Noffz, Elisabeth Richter, Ulrich Vogel, Michael Schwab, Control of a COVID-19 outbreak in a nursing home by general screening and cohort isolation in Germany, March to May 2020. Eurosurveillance 2021;26(1):pii=2001365.

COVID-19 outbreaks are still a major problem for nursing facilities. These outbreaks are responsible for nearly half of the COVID-19-related deaths in Germany. Researchers from the IHM have together with a major local nursing home provider analyzed the course of a COVID-19 outbreak in a 174-bed nursing home and how it could be stopped by a combined intervention of repeated general screening and cohort isolation together with supporting infection control measures.

A universal screening revealed that despite their average age of 86 years one third of the SARS-CoV-2 infected residents have not shown any symptoms. The described intervention can be taken as a blueprint for the handling of current outbreaks and have in many instances be adopted in international guidelines.

32-yr old Manuel Krone is the corresponding author of the study. He is currently completing his training as a medical microbiologist.



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