Primary pre-hospital triage of patients with COVID-19
The COVID-19 pandemic affected every sector of society, radically altering the work of health systems throughout the world. In the situation of the mass influx of patients seeking medical care that was hard to control, the issue of the widespread adoption of the medical sorting (triage) principles became urgent within weeks. The review provides analysis of 49 publications dealing with various aspects of arranging pre-hospital triage. The dynamic changes in approaches to triage, its objectives and technologies, as well as in the contribution of various X-ray imaging methods depending on the evolving experience of working with the novel infection, are of great interest. The search for literature in Russian and English published before March 10, 2022 was performed in a number of databases (Embase, Medline/PubMed, Researchgate, medrxiv.org, RISC). The search was performed using the following keywords: COVID-19, coronavirus, коронавирус, SARS-COV-2, 2019nCOV, lung ultrasound, computed tomography, computerized tomography, компьютерная томография, СT, triage, сортировка. The strategy of establishing pre-hospital triage centers or stations in case of pandemic makes it possible to reduce both the burden on the emergency departments and the occupancy rate for inpatient services. Quick access to various imaging methods (X-ray imaging, lung ultrasound or computed tomography) greatly facilitates taking clinical decisions, and could be considered beneficial in the current extraordinary situation.