Factors affecting turnaround time of SARS-CoV-2 sequencing for inpatient infection prevention and control decision making: Analysis of data from the COG-UK HOCI study

Hayley Colton*, Matthew D. Parker, Oliver Stirrup, James Blackstone, Matthew Loose, C. Patrick McClure, Sunando Roy, Charlotte Williams, Julie McLeod, Darren Smith, Yusri Taha, Peijun Zhang, Sharon Nienyun Hsu, Beatrix Kele, Kathryn Harris, Fiona Mapp, Rachel Williams, COG-UK HOCI Investigators, The COVID-19 Genomics UK (COG-UK) Consortium, Paul Flowers, Judith BreuerDavid G. Partridge, Thushan I. de Silva

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background
Barriers to rapid return of sequencing results can affect the utility of sequence data for infection prevention and control decisions.

Aim
To undertake a mixed-methods analysis to identify challenges sites faced in achieving a rapid turnaround time (TAT) in the COG-UK Hospital-Onset COVID-19 Infection (COG-UK HOCI) study.

Methods
For the quantitative analysis, timepoints relating to different stages of the sequencing process were extracted from both the COG-UK HOCI dataset and surveys of study sites. Qualitative data relating to the barriers and facilitators to achieving rapid TAT were included from thematic analysis.

Findings
The overall TAT, from sample collection to receipt of sequence report by infection control teams, varied between sites (median 5.1 days, range 3.0 – 29.0 days). Most variation was seen between reporting of a positive COVID-19 PCR result to sequence report generation (median 4.0 days, range 2.3 – 27.0 days). On deeper analysis, most of this variability was accounted for by differences in the delay between the COVID-19 PCR result and arrival of the sample at the sequencing laboratory (median 20.8 hours, 16.0 – 88.7 hours). Qualitative analyses suggest closer proximity of sequencing labs to diagnostic labs, increased staff flexibility and regular transport times facilitated a shorter TAT.

Conclusion
Integration of pathogen sequencing into diagnostic laboratories may help improve sequencing TAT to allow sequence data to be of tangible value to infection control practice. Adding a quality control step upstream to increase capacity further down the workflow may also optimise TAT if lower quality samples are removed earlier on.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Hospital Infection
Early online date10 Oct 2022
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 10 Oct 2022

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Factors affecting turnaround time of SARS-CoV-2 sequencing for inpatient infection prevention and control decision making: Analysis of data from the COG-UK HOCI study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this