We are starting to see lots of recent Covid +ve patients ... who had all been covid +ve within the last 11-16 days. This will no doubt be out 'new norm' for the next while....
Reconfirmed with Susie Forbes virology/micro consultant ... Rapid swabs day 9-90 post covid just give us a yes or no (so the majority with come back +ve) You need a full resp screen PCR to provide the spectrum of high to low positivity. If pt has undertaken their isolation and is clinically well then treat as amber and await full screen PCR - if low positive then treat continue to treat as amber (extremely low risk of any viral shedding). If HIGH positive then pt becomes a RED pt.
in these cases which are CAT 1 and have to come to theatre then reinforce to staff that they are in an amber area, result not back and they need to wear FFP3 PPE for their own protection. But pt can be extubated and taken to recovery as an amber pt - only if the full screen PCR comes back high positive does the pt then become RED.
Any doubts about 8-12 days post covid and staff concerned then err on the side of caution as treat pt as RED for theatre and ward. (Thanks Fiona!) ... I’ve also been talking to Owen Seddon about this. Ideally, non symptomatic patients shouldn’t be checked from 10-90 days after a positive result. If they are checked by mistake AND are symptom free AND not immunocompromised, then we should ignore a positive result. Otherwise ask virology for their advice. (Thanks Naomi!)