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Covid-sniffing Dogs are accurate, but widespread use faces hurdles

The dog nose is a great Covid-19 detector. Numerous laboratory studies, And the Covid detection dog is already Airports in other countries And at some events in the United States Miami heat basketball game..

However, some public health and scented dog training experts say that more information and planning is needed to ensure accuracy in the real world.

Director of the Pennsylvania Working Dog Center, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Pennsylvania A new treatise on the use of scented dogs in Covid detection..

According to a new treatise in the journal Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness, private groups have certified drug detection and bombs and rescue dogs, but there is no similar program for medical detection.

Lois Privor-Dame, a public health researcher at Johns Hopkins University and lead author of the treatise, said there is no doubt that dogs have great potential in the medical field. But she wants to find a way to deploy them on a large scale, such as by the government.

“What are all the ethical considerations? What are the regulatory considerations? How practical is this?” She asked. Logistics and cost, as well as detection quality, are at the heart of a wide range of applications, as are public health interventions.

Quality control is the first step and a big step. According to Dr. Otto, detecting drug odors is more complicated than detecting drugs and bombs. Dogs working for drugs and explosives detection at the airport have a consistent situation and a fairly simple target odor. Researchers know that dogs can distinguish sweat and urine from infected individuals with Covid detection. But they don’t know which chemical the dog is identifying.

Due to the variety of human scents, medical detection dogs need to be trained for many different people. “We have all of these things that smell of all races, ages, diets, and humans,” said Dr. Otto.

Symptoms of many medical conditions are similar to those of Covid, and dogs that detect fever and pneumonia-related scents are ineffective. Therefore, the subjects used to train dogs should include “many people who are negative but may have a cough, fever, etc.” Dr. Otto said. If a dog mistakes the flu for Covid, it’s clearly a serious mistake.

Dogs can also be trained in sweat, saliva and urine. In the United Arab Emirates, dogs treated urine samples. In Miami, they just walked along a line of people.

Positive cases of Covid infection detected in dogs are usually confirmed by the current gold standard, which is a PCR test to confirm the presence of coronavirus. Review of studies published last week However, he concluded that the dog performed better than the test.

However, these are experimental results. Dogs are good at detecting explosives and other substances from a distance, but so far, Dr. Otto proves the accuracy of dogs lining up and sniffing instead of urine or sweat. He said he did not know the published research.

If the government officially implements or approves dogs for Covid detection, some criteria need to be established for how dogs are trained and how dog performance is evaluated. Dr. Otto is currently a member of the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s committee developing standards for odor detection dogs in a variety of situations, including detection of Covid.

She said finding enough dogs to perform widespread odor detection, even with well-defined criteria, is another hurdle. Trained dogs are not easily available. “There is a shortage of dogs for bomb detection in this country. We have been dealing with it for years,” she said.

Dogs can be retrained from one scent to another, but with caution in and of themselves. “In some countries, we actually take bomb-trained dogs and train them in Covid. But all you have to do is think at the airport. If you covid and bomb If you have dogs that sniff both and they warn you, what do you have? “

Well-trained dogs are also expensive and require paid and well-trained human handlers. According to the report, dogs can cost $ 10,000 and scent training per dog is $ 16,000.The· For example, Transportation Security Administration There is a $ 12 million training facility for explosives detection dogs and handlers in San Antonio, and the cost of training dogs and handlers is estimated at $ 33,000 for explosives detection and $ 46,000 for passenger screening.

All these issues determine how the dog will be used in the future. Their abilities are given. “I think they can definitely do that,” said Dr. Otto. “That’s how we implement them.”

Covid-sniffing Dogs are accurate, but widespread use faces hurdles

Source link Covid-sniffing Dogs are accurate, but widespread use faces hurdles

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