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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 67-73

Corona virus outbreak and Radiology Department: Workplace preparedness, evidence based measures to limit transmission, and how radiologist can help reduce the spread

Department of Radiology, MGM IMS and Research institute, Aurangabad, Maharashtra, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Amol M Lahoti
Endovascular Experts, Flat 15, 4th Floor, Sai Bhadra Residency, Venktesh Nagar, Near Ellora Diagnostics, MGM, Aurangabad, Maharashtra
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


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As we are facing a country wide lockdown in view of international pandemic of Corona Virus-2019 (COVID-19) and deal with never seen before circumstances all over the world, healthcare personnel are often first one to get affected in view of direct exposure because of limited availability of knowledge and personal protection equipment (PPE). Planning and preparedness are essential to respond effectively to outbreaks and epidemic. Radiologists have greater risk of acquiring and transmitting infection due to its close contact with patients during ultrasound (USG) and other procedures related to invasive patient care the service needs to offer. High density, limited space, and working in air conditioned set up are needed for computed tomography, MRI, ultrasonography, X-ray machines; this makes it essential to set specific guidelines to limit transmission and utilize resources in the best possible way so as to minimize the transmission, and at the same time, implementation of a well-prepared plan as per the radiology department is required to prevent further transmission of the virus to department staff members and patients. A multitiered, updated scientific approach suited to us needs to be devised, followed, and monitored at the administrative and departmental level, taking into account the Radiology team that includes doctors, technicians, assistants, and patient contact-operating points. Here, is a systematic scientific review of infection control measures that cover the different dynamics of utmost patient care and staff protocols without hampering the patient treatment for the radiology department set up. We review precautions and safety measures for radiology department personnel to manage patients. It is not clear to what extent the COVID-19 epidemic would establish itself and how long it is going to continue in India. As case diagnosis may take anywhere from a minimum of 14 days to a few months to be visible, we need to enhance surveillance and prepare the community in a proportionate way. Radiology department and the overall health care system should be prepared, educated to continue the servicing emergency scans procedures and important elective procedures following the strict aseptic precautions so health care workers and patients safety are maintained. Each one of us should understand the disease dynamics, routes, and source of transmission and should take utmost precautions to prevent transmission to colleagues and patients by properly using PPE, as early detection and limiting exposure of healthcare workers, employees, and patients is of utmost importance.

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