Chest Radiographs and CTs in the Era of COVID-19: Indications, Operational Safety Considerations and Alternative Imaging Practices.
Coronavirus disease-19 (COVID-19) is a pathogen that has shown an ability for sustained community transmission. To ensure utmost safety, radiology services will need to adapt to this disease in the coming months and possibly years ahead. This will include learning how to perform radiographs and CT in a safe and sustainable manner. Due to the risk of nosocomial spread of disease, the judicious use and implementation of strict infection protocols is paramount to limit healthcare worker and patient transmission. Between 28 January 2020 and 8 June 2020, our institution performed 12,034 radiographs and 178 CT scans for suspected or confirmed COVID-19 patients. As of 8 June 2020, there have been no documented instances of healthcare staff acquiring COVID-19 during the course of work. In this article, we present the indications and operational considerations used by our institution to safely image patients with suspected or confirmed COVID-19. Alternative practices for imaging radiographs are also discussed.