This study aimed to evaluate the truthfulness of patients about their pre-appointment COVID-19 screening tests at a dental clinic.
A total of 613 patients were recruited for the study from the dental clinic at the Faculty of Dentistry, Najran University, Saudi Arabia. The data collection was done in three parts from the patients who visited the hospital to receive dental treatment. The first part included the socio-demographic characteristics of the patients and the COVID-19 swab tests performed within the past 14 days. The second part was the clinical examination, and the third part was a confirmation of the swab test taken by the patient by checking the Hesen website using the patient ID. After data collection, statistical analysis was carried out using SPSS 26.0. Descriptive analysis was done and expressed as mean, standard deviation, frequency, and percentage (%). A cross-tabulation, also described as a contingency table, was used to identify trends and patterns across data and explain the correlation between different variables.
It was seen from the status of the swab test within 14 days of the patient's arrival at the hospital for the dental treatment that 18 (2.9%) patients lied about the pre-treatment swab test within 14 days, and 595 (97.1%) were truthful. The observed and expected counts showed across genders and diagnosis a statistically significant difference (p < 0.001), and there was no significant difference seen across different age groups (p = 0.064) of the patients.
Dental healthcare workers are worried and assume a high risk of COVID-19 infection as the patients are not truthful about the pre-treatment COVID-19 swab test. Routine rapid tests on patients and the healthcare staff are a feasible option for lowering overall risks.
COVID-19; dental clinic; diagnosis; exposure; risk; swab test.