Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Swine flu diagnoses put children at risk

  • 1 Comment

The swine flu algorithm used by the National Pandemic Flu Service in 2009-10 to triage patients by phone or online “is of little use in differentiating unwell children”, according to UK researchers.

They tested it on 72 children admitted with fever to Nottingham Children’s Hospital and found the algorithm would have diagnosed 71 with swine flu.

Two patients were confirmed as having swine flu, but 32 patients definitely did not have it.

The authors said: “There is a significant risk of harm with false-positive diagnoses. Face-to-face consultations may be the only way to ensure patient safety.”

  • 1 Comment

Readers' comments (1)

  • I'm sure this is not a diagnostic tool but designed to signpost people to correct next port of call. The 'worried well' will also ways sort higher, it is those who don't think they are at risk that usually are. The tool helps question and probe further rather than take answers at face value.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.