Background: In December 2019, in Wuhan, China; a new coronavirus emerged that had not been previously identified in humans. Hence is crucial to characterize the infection risk among infected health care workers (HCWs), being responsible for secondary transmission to patients, and others.
Objectives: The current study aimed to assess the disease burden among the front-line warriors and efficiently planned the preventive and management strategies for such infections.
Methods: HCWs with clinical suspicion of COVID-19 infection, who reported to Fever Clinic for possible diagnosis by Truenat testing, were enrolled through a self-reporting Risk Assessment form. An oropharyngeal swab was subjected to Truenat testing based on the principle of Real time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR).
Results: Doctors comprised 60% of our HCWs. Eighty-three percent of the HCWs under study reported either the presence of BCG scar or gave a history of BCG immunization at birth. The maximum number of HCWs (29.16%) took Hydroxychloroquine prophylaxis for four weeks. Seventy-four percent of the HCWs affirmed the use of personal protective equipment (PPE) at the time of exposure. The most common mode of infection reported was the exposure to COVID-19 patients. Fever was the most common reported symptom. Truenat was positive in 9 of 100 HCWs who were tested, giving an infection rate of 9%.
Conclusion: The study provides insights into the burden of COVID-19 infection among HCWs, and guides us to evaluate and plan our preventive measures and management strategies for such infections.