Ward closure to control outbreaks of infectious diseases among hospitalized patients in acute care settings: effects are uncertain

Added April 8, 2020

Citation: Wong H, Eso K, Ip A, et al. Use of ward closure to control outbreaks among hospitalized patients in acute care settings: a systematic review. Systematic Reviews 2015; 4: 152

What is this? Ward closure in acute care facilities might be used to control outbreaks of infectious diseases. This approach may be of relevance in the COVID-19 pandemic.

In this systematic review, the authors searched for studies in which ward closure was used as a measure to control outbreaks of infectious diseases in patients hospitalized in acute care facilities. They did not restrict by date, type or language of publication and did their searches in July 2014. They identified 67 case series, 14 case-control studies and 16 studies of other designs. Among these, 11 studies focused on diseases of the respiratory system, including severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS). There were no controlled comparisons of ward closures versus other interventions.

What works: Nothing noted.

What doesn’t work: Nothing noted.

What’s uncertain: The lack of controlled studies means that the impact of ward closure on the control of outbreaks of infectious diseases in acute care settings are uncertain.


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