New case definition and laboratory testing criteria
(updated 23/3/2020 based on the recommendations of the Scientific Advisory Committee for COVID-19)
Definition of a suspected case in the community (Algorithm 1)Patient with symptoms1 :
Self-isolation may be stopped once 14 days have passed from the improvement of the symptoms.
1 Note: Less common symptoms include sore throat/ dry throat/ nasal congestion/ runny nose/ anemia, headaches and gastrointestinal symptoms (vomiting, diarrhoea). Caution is required here as symptoms such as runny nose, sneezing, runny eyes, itching are most likely due to a seasonal allergy.
Management of suspected case that requires referral to Public Health Practice (Algorithms 1 AND 2)
Respiratory infection (without other clear cause) and at least one:
Recommendation for referral from GP to Public Health Practice by appointment, completion of electronic referral form or calling 1420, laboratory testing for COVID-19 and assessment of severity (see algorithm)
Criteria of severity of patient for hospitalisation (Algorithm 2 AND 3)
Patients with acute respiratory infection referred by Public Health Practice, 1420 or from A&E Dept and has at least one of the following conditions:
Recommendation for laboratory testing for COVID-19 and Influenza A&B, admission to hospital (Suspected Case Management Unit) and appropriate management.Note: Laboratory findings supporting the potential diagnosis of COVID-19 are: Lymphopenia (<1000/mm3), Neutrophil/lymphocyte ratio >3, High Ferritin, Increased D-Dimers, Increased LDH, Hyperglycaemia, Thrombocytopenia, Transaminase
Criteria for Laboratory Testing of Hospitalised patients (Algorithm 4)2 of the following 3 criteria must be met for laboratory testing of a hospitalised patient:
For any other case please contact the Infectious Disease Officer at the Suspected Case Management Unit.
Samples for laboratory testing for COVID-19 to be taken as well as Influenza A&B or Multiplex Respiratory Panel by designated staff for specimen collection.
Transfer to single bed room or to Suspected Case Management Unit until infection is confirmed/ ruled out.