Background: Nurses are the primary clinicians who collect specimens for respiratory tract infection testing. The specimen collection procedure is time and resource-consuming, but more importantly, it places nurses at risk for potential infection. The practice of allowing patients to self-collect their diagnostic specimens may provide an alternative testing model for the current COVID-19 outbreaks. The objective of this paper was to evaluate the accuracy and patient perception of self-collected specimens for respiratory tract infection diagnostics. Methods: A concise clinical review of the recently published literature was conducted. Results: A total of 11 articles were included the review synthesis. The concept of self-collected specimens has a high patient acceptance rate of 83-99%. Self-collected nasal-swab specimens demonstrated strong diagnostic fidelity for respiratory tract infections with a sensitivity between 80-100%, this is higher than the 76% sensitivity observed with self-collected throat specimens. In a comparative study evaluating a professionally collected to a self-collected specimen for COVID-19 testing, a high degree of agreement (k = 0.89) was observed between the two methods. Conclusion: As we continue to explore for testing models to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, self-collected specimens is a practical alternative to nurse specimen collection.
- Emergency department
- Respiratory tract infection/diagnostic
- Respiratory tract infection/self-collect
- Respiratory tract infection/testing
ASJC Scopus subject areas