Neha Shah

and 5 more

Objective To explore patients’ attitudes and acceptability of universal screening for COVID-19 in a maternity population. Design Pre-screening and post-screening patient surveys Setting London Population Women admitted to the Maternity Unit at Newham Hospital during a two-week trial period of universal screening. Methods Cluster random sampling was used to select participants to complete the pre-screening questionnaire. Post-screening questionnaires were performed over the telephone. Main outcome measured Agreement to statements regarding patient’s acceptability of the SARS-CoV-2 screening test and the impact screening had on the care provided to themselves and their babies. Results During the two-week period, 180 women underwent universal screening. 81 participants completed the pre-screening questionnaire and 79 participants completed the post-screening survey (72-85% completion rate). More than 70% of women agreed that routine screening resulted in a positive effect on their care, the care of their babies and on their families. More than 80% of women agreed that they would be happy with their care if all pregnant women were offered testing for COVID-19 on admission to hospital. However, 50.62% of women agreed that having a COVID-19 screening swab test taken was uncomfortable and 35.80% were worried about the test results. Nulliparous women were more likely to perceive the positive impacts of screening on their care, their babies care, and their families as compared to multiparous women. Conclusion Our study provides evidence that patient acceptability and tolerance to COVID-19 screening is high, which is key for future implementation of universal screening across maternity services in the UK.