An epidemiologic study of COVID-19 patients in a state psychiatric hospital: High penetrance with early CDC guidelines

John W. Thompson, Amy J. Mikolajewski, Patricia Kissinger, Patrick McCrossen, Allison Smither, Govind Datta Chamarthi, Zhen Lin, Di Tian

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective: This study aimed to explore the transmission of COVID-19 in a U.S. state psychiatric hospital setting. Methods: Symptomatic and asymptomatic patients were tested throughout a large psychiatric hospital to determine penetrance. The hospital followed initial Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines. Results: Seventy-eight percent (N=51 of 65) of tested patients in the building where the first positive patient was housed (building zero) tested positive for COVID-19. Eightyeight percent (N=14 of 16) of tested asymptomatic patients in building zero were positive, compared with 12% (N=6 of 51) of randomly selected asymptomatic patients in a sample from the rest of the hospital. Conclusions: A high percentage of patients can become positive for COVID-19 despite following initial CDC guidelines. As such, use of masks by all patients in close-quarter settings prior to the first positive case appears warranted. Recent CDC guidelines align with this strategy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1285-1287
Number of pages3
JournalPsychiatric Services
Volume71
Issue number12
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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