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Abstract: PO0087

Feasibility of Infection Control Measures in Hemodialysis Units to Prevent Outbreaks of COVID-19: A Descriptive Study from Quebec

Session Information

Category: Coronavirus (COVID-19)

  • 000 Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Authors

  • Beaubien-Souligny, William, Centre Hospitalier de l'Universite de Montreal, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
  • Nadeau-Fredette, Annie-Claire, Hopital Maisonneuve-Rosemont, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
  • Nguyen, Marie-Noël, Centre Hospitalier de l'Universite de Montreal, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
  • Rios, Norka, Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
  • Caron, Marie-Line, Centre Hospitalier de l'Universite de Montreal, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
  • Tom, Alexander, Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
  • Suri, Rita, Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre, Montreal, Quebec, Canada

Group or Team Name

  • Quebec Renal Network
Background

In-center hemodialysis (HD) units pose the perfect conditions for COVID-19 transmission yet limited space and resources are obstacles to infection prevention and control (IPAC) measures. We aimed to describe IPAC measures implemented and document the infection rates within HD units during the first year of the pandemic.

Methods

We invited leaders of Quebec’s HD units to collect information on IPAC measures from March 1st to June 30th 2020 and HD unit characteristics. Participating units were contacted again in March 2021 to collect information about the total number of cases. The cumulative infection rate of each unit was compared to the regional cumulative infection rate using a standardized infection ratio (SIR).

Results

Data was obtained from 38 units, representing 90% of Quebec’s HD patients. 30% of units were perceived as crowded, and this was associated with objective distance measures between stations, which was much more likely to be <2m in units considered crowded (83.3% vs 19.2% p<0.001). IPAC measures regarding general prevention, screening procedures, physical distancing, and PPE use were implemented in 50% of units by 3 weeks and the remainder by 6 weeks. Data on cumulative infection rate was obtained in 26 units providing care to 3942 patients. The cumulative infection rate was disproportionally elevated in HD units compared to regional rates (Median SIR:2.68 IQR:1.58; 4.45)(Figure 1). No difference was noted in the SIR related to specific IPAC measures or to the physical characteristics of the units.

Conclusion

Hemodialysis units throughout Quebec were able to rapidly implement modified IPAC measures. Despite this, infection rates were disproportionally elevated.