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Using samples to estimate the sensitivity and specificity of a surveillance process

McBryde, Emma S., Kelly, Heath , Marshall, Caroline , Russo, Philip L. , McElwain, D. L. Sean, & Pettitt, Anthony N. (2008) Using samples to estimate the sensitivity and specificity of a surveillance process. Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology, 29(6), pp. 559-563.

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Abstract

Determining sensitivity and specificity of a postoperative infection surveillance process is a difficult undertaking. Because postoperative infections are rare, vast numbers of negative results exist, and it is often not reasonable to assess them all. This study gives a methodological framework for estimating sensitivity and specificity by taking only a small sample of the number of patients who test negative and comparing their findings to the reference or “gold standard” rather than comparing the findings of all patients to the gold standard. It provides a formula for deriving confidence intervals for these estimates and a guide to minimum requirements for sampling results.

Impact and interest:

1 citations in Scopus
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1 citations in Web of Science®

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ID Code: 31119
Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: Infectious Diseases, Sampling Theory
DOI: 10.1086/588203
ISSN: 0899-823X
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MATHEMATICAL SCIENCES (010000) > STATISTICS (010400) > Applied Statistics (010401)
Divisions: Past > QUT Faculties & Divisions > Faculty of Science and Technology
Past > Schools > Mathematical Sciences
Deposited On: 04 Mar 2010 09:31
Last Modified: 29 Feb 2012 23:43

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