SARS-CoV-2 Infection Among Healthcare Workers in Tijuana, Mexico: A Cross-Sectional Study
Background: Healthcare workers (HCW) are a high-risk group for contraction of the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection. The aim of this study was to estimate the effect size of being a HCW and acquiring coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) at the Mexican Institute of Social Security (IMSS) in Tijuana, Mexico.
Methods: A cross-sectional study of the Epidemiologic Surveillance Online Notification System database was conducted, including entries from Tijuana City between March 11, 2020 to May 1, 2020. Multiple imputation was performed for SARS-CoV-2 RT-PCR result where data was missing. Prevalence odds ratios (POR) were calculated to estimate the effect size of HCWs contracting COVID-19 compared to the general population (GP).
Results: From a total of 10,216 entries, 6,256 patients were included for analysis. HCW status was significantly associated with higher odds of acquiring COVID-19, (POR=1.730, Confidence Interval 95% [CI95%]=1.459;2.050). Nurses had double odds (POR=2.339, CI95%=1.804;3.032) than the GP. Physicians had a POR=1.828 (CI95%=0.766;1.380). Resident physician status was double the likelihood of the GP (POR=2.166, CI95%=0.933;5.025). Meanwhile, being an intern had a protective factor (POR=0.253, CI95%=0.085;0.758). Among medical specialties, emergency medicine had the highest exposure-effect association, followed by anesthesiologists.
Conclusion: HCW had up to 73% increased odds of acquiring COVID-19 than the GP in Tijuana, Mexico. Nurses were the group with the highest likelihood out of all HCW, as a result of prolonged and close contact with patients. Emergency medicine and anesthesiology were the medical specialties with highest odds of infection because they frequently perform aerosol-generating procedures.
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