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Feasibility and acceptability of daily testing at school as an alternative to self-isolation following close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19: a qualitative analysis

Feasibility and acceptability of daily testing at school as an alternative to self-isolation following close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19: a qualitative analysis
Feasibility and acceptability of daily testing at school as an alternative to self-isolation following close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19: a qualitative analysis
Abstract Background Daily testing using a rapid Lateral Flow Device (LFD) has been suggested as an alternative to self-isolation. A randomised trial comparing daily contact testing (DCT) in schools with self-isolation found that SARS-CoV-2 transmission within school was comparable and low in both groups. However, if this approach is to be adopted widely, it is critical that we understand the perspective of those who will be delivering and receiving DCT. The aim of this qualitative process study embedded in the randomised controlled trial (RCT) was to improve understanding of a range of behavioural factors that could influence implementation. Methods Interviews were conducted with 63 participants, including staff, students, and parents of students who had been identified as being in close contact with someone with COVID-19. The topic guide explored perceptions of daily testing, understanding of positive and negative test results, and adherence to guidance. Data were analysed using an inductive thematic approach. Results Results were organised under three main headings: (1) factors influencing daily testing (2) interpretation of test results (3) behaviour during testing period. Participants recognized that daily testing may allow students to remain in school, which was viewed as necessary for both education and social needs. Whilst some felt safer as a result of daily testing, others raised concerns about safety. Participants did not always understand how to interpret and respond to test results, and although participants reported high levels of adherence to the guidance, improved communications were desired. Conclusion Daily testing may be a feasible and acceptable alternative to self-isolation among close contacts of people who test positive. However, improved communications are needed to ensure that all students and parents have a good understanding of the rationale for testing, what test results mean, how test results should be acted on, and how likely students are to test positive following close contact. Support is needed for students and parents of students who have to self-isolate and for those who have concerns about the safety of daily testing.
figshare Academic Research System
Denford, Sarah
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Towler, Lauren
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Ali, Behiye
087c839f-79c3-4e5b-83ee-e04d0139e3da
Treneman-Evans, Georgia
aa12c5e1-3674-453e-83a4-19d1f3d5a7ba
Bloomer, Rachael
59126ea8-6613-4616-be3b-a66421f358ee
Peto, Tim EA
e944202d-df0c-4231-b8ac-ba2493ab41ec
Young, Bernadette C.
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Yardley, Lucy
64be42c4-511d-484d-abaa-f8813452a22e
Denford, Sarah
8970b5a7-8cad-4356-ad0e-88297b67db37
Towler, Lauren
ebb4fb4e-703f-4e52-a9dc-53e72ca68e8f
Ali, Behiye
087c839f-79c3-4e5b-83ee-e04d0139e3da
Treneman-Evans, Georgia
aa12c5e1-3674-453e-83a4-19d1f3d5a7ba
Bloomer, Rachael
59126ea8-6613-4616-be3b-a66421f358ee
Peto, Tim EA
e944202d-df0c-4231-b8ac-ba2493ab41ec
Young, Bernadette C.
9fbc0920-5aab-4167-acf7-4c92e6657bbf
Yardley, Lucy
64be42c4-511d-484d-abaa-f8813452a22e

(2022) Feasibility and acceptability of daily testing at school as an alternative to self-isolation following close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19: a qualitative analysis. figshare Academic Research System doi:10.6084/m9.figshare.c.5947935.v1 [Dataset]

Record type: Dataset

Abstract

Abstract Background Daily testing using a rapid Lateral Flow Device (LFD) has been suggested as an alternative to self-isolation. A randomised trial comparing daily contact testing (DCT) in schools with self-isolation found that SARS-CoV-2 transmission within school was comparable and low in both groups. However, if this approach is to be adopted widely, it is critical that we understand the perspective of those who will be delivering and receiving DCT. The aim of this qualitative process study embedded in the randomised controlled trial (RCT) was to improve understanding of a range of behavioural factors that could influence implementation. Methods Interviews were conducted with 63 participants, including staff, students, and parents of students who had been identified as being in close contact with someone with COVID-19. The topic guide explored perceptions of daily testing, understanding of positive and negative test results, and adherence to guidance. Data were analysed using an inductive thematic approach. Results Results were organised under three main headings: (1) factors influencing daily testing (2) interpretation of test results (3) behaviour during testing period. Participants recognized that daily testing may allow students to remain in school, which was viewed as necessary for both education and social needs. Whilst some felt safer as a result of daily testing, others raised concerns about safety. Participants did not always understand how to interpret and respond to test results, and although participants reported high levels of adherence to the guidance, improved communications were desired. Conclusion Daily testing may be a feasible and acceptable alternative to self-isolation among close contacts of people who test positive. However, improved communications are needed to ensure that all students and parents have a good understanding of the rationale for testing, what test results mean, how test results should be acted on, and how likely students are to test positive following close contact. Support is needed for students and parents of students who have to self-isolate and for those who have concerns about the safety of daily testing.

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Published date: 2022

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 456551
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/456551
PURE UUID: 5f96c637-d77d-4f36-a219-37ca9ec97a98
ORCID for Lucy Yardley: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-3853-883X

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Date deposited: 04 May 2022 17:27
Last modified: 12 Jan 2023 02:35

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Contributors

Contributor: Sarah Denford
Contributor: Lauren Towler
Contributor: Behiye Ali
Contributor: Georgia Treneman-Evans
Contributor: Rachael Bloomer
Contributor: Tim EA Peto
Contributor: Bernadette C. Young
Contributor: Lucy Yardley ORCID iD

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