30 Apr 2021
As the local community COVID-19 prevalence increased, we initiated SARS-CoV-2 universal screening for all adult patients admitted through the emergency department (ED). Of 8,518 patients screened, 288 (3.38%) tested positive, 133 (46%) were asymptomatic and would have been admitted without necessary precautions. Patients with symptoms that may be attributable to COVID-19 were significantly older and admitted through the medical-ED. Patients of Bedouin Arab ethnicity accounted for half of those who tested positive, double their prevalence in the general population. Our findings indicate that universal SARS-CoV-2 screening on adult hospital admission is crucial in areas with a high prevalence of COVID-19.