Your browser doesn't support javascript.
Show: 20 | 50 | 100
Results 1 - 15 de 15
Filter
1.
EuropePMC; 2022.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-338464

ABSTRACT

Background: In England, the emergence the more transmissible SARS-CoV-2 variant Alpha (B.1.1.7) led to a third national lockdown from December 2020, including restricted attendance at schools. Nurseries, however, remained fully open. COVID-19 outbreaks (≥ 2 laboratory-confirmed cases within 14 days) in nurseries and assess the risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection and incidence rates in staff and children over a three-month period when community SARS-CoV-2 infections rates were high and the Alpha variant was spreading rapidly across England. Methods This was a cross-sectional national investigation of COVID-19 outbreaks in nurseries across England Nurseries reporting a COVID-19 outbreak to PHE between November 2020 and January 2021 were requested to complete a questionnaire about their outbreak. Results 324 nurseries, comprising 1% (324/32,852) of nurseries in England, reported a COVID-19 outbreak. Of the 315 (97%) nurseries contacted, 173 (55%) reported 1,657 SARS-CoV-2 cases, including 510 (31%) children and 1,147 (69%) staff. A child was the index case in 45 outbreaks (26%) and staff in 125 (72%) outbreaks. Overall, children had an incidence rate of 3.50% (95%CI, 3.21–3.81%) and was similar irrespective of whether the index case was a child (3.55%;95%CI, 3.01–4.19%) or staff (3.44%;95%CI, 3.10–3.82%). Among staff, incidence rates were lower if the index case was a child (26.28%;95%CI, 23.54–29.21%%) compared to a staff member (32.98%;95%CI, 31.19–34.82%), with the highest incidence rate when the index case was also a staff member (37.52%;95%CI, 35.39–39.70%). Compared to November 2020, outbreak sizes and incidence rates were higher in January 2021, when the Alpha variant predominated. Nationally, SARS-CoV-2 infection rates in < 5 year-olds remained low and followed trends in older age-groups, increasing during December 2020 and declining thereafter. Conclusions In this cross-sectional study of COVID-19 outbreaks in nurseries, one in three staff were affected compared to one in thirty children. There was some evidence of increased transmissibility and higher incidence rates associated with the Alpha variant

2.
EuropePMC; 2020.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-323841

ABSTRACT

Background: The COVID-19 pandemic in the UK began in late January 2020 and peaked in mid-April before declining. Children typically develop only very mild symptoms and it remains unclear what role children play in the spread of COVID-19. The aim of this study was to report the prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in healthy children of healthcare workers. Methods: Healthy children of healthcare workers, were recruited in London during May 2020. Participants had nose and throat swabs tested for SARS-CoV-2 infection via RT-qPCR and blood serums samples for SARS-CoV-2 immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibodies. Findings: A total of 215 children from 126 families took part and 25(12%) were seropositive for SARS-CoV-2. Children of clinical healthcare workers were significantly more likely to be seropositive 23/133(17%) than those of non-clinical healthcare workers 2/83(2%);p=0.001.In children of parents with confirmed COVID-19, seropositivity was 19/47(40%) compared to 3/44(7%) in children of parents with suspected COVID-19 and 3/124(2%) in children of asymptomatic parents (p<0.001). Overall, 15/83(18%) of symptomatic children were seropositive compared to 10/132(8%) of asymptomatic children (p=0.02). The most commonly reported symptoms were fever 7/25(28%), headache 4/25(16%) and lethargy 5/25(20%). None of the children were hospitalised with COVID-19. Interpretation: The secondary attack rate in children of healthcare workers with confirmed COVID-19 was 40% compared to 2% of children in families with no reported symptoms. One in three seropositive children were asymptomatic.Trial Registration: NCT0434740Funding Statement: This study was funded by the Public Health Agency [COM/5596/20].Declaration of Interests: None disclosed.Ethics Approval Statement: The London (Chelsea) research ethics committee reviewed the study protocol and provided a favourable outcome (Project ID 282617, OREC ID 20/HRA/1731).

3.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-319290

ABSTRACT

Background : Little is known about the views of adolescents returning to secondary school during the current COVID-19 pandemic. Methods: In September 2020, Public Health England (PHE) recruited staff and students in secondary schools to provide nasal swabs, oral fluid and blood samples for SARS-CoV-2 infection and antibody testing. Students aged 11-18 years in five London schools completed a short questionnaire about their perception of the pandemic, returning to school, risk to themselves and to others and infection control measures, and participating in school testing. Results: A questionnaire was completed by 64% (297/462) participants. Students were generally not anxious at all (19.7%;58/294) or not really anxious (40.0%, 114/295) about returning to school, although 5.4% (n=16/295) were extremely nervous. Most students were very worried about transmitting the virus to their family (60.2%;177/294) rather than other students (22.0%;65/296) or school staff (19.3%;57/296), or catching the infection themselves (12.5%;37/296). Students better maintained physical distancing in the presence of school staff (84.6%;247/292) and in public places (79.5%;233/293) but not when with other students (46.8%;137/293) or friends (40.8%;120/294). A greater proportion of younger students (school years 7-9) reported not being anxious at all than 16-18 year olds (47/174 [27.0%] vs 3/63 [4.8%];p=0.001). They were also less likely to adhere to physical distancing and wearing face masks. Most students reported positive experiences with testing in schools, with 92.3% (262/284) agreeing to have another blood test in future visits.Conclusions: Younger students were less concerned about catching and transmitting SARS-CoV-2 and were less likely to adhere to protective measures. Greater awareness of the potential risks of COVID-19 transmission between secondary school students potentially leading to increased risk of infection in their teachers and their household members may increase adherence to infection control measures within and outside schools.

4.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-314792

ABSTRACT

Background: Many countries re-opened schools after national lockdown but little is known about the risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection and transmission in educational settings. Public Health England conducted six-month prospective surveillance in primary schools across England. Methods: The COVID-19 Surveillance in School KIDs (sKIDs) study included two arms: weekly nasal swabs for ≥4 weeks following partial reopening during the summer half-term (June to mid-July 2020) and blood sampling with nasal and throat swabs at the beginning and end of the summer half-term, and, following full reopening in September 2020, at the end of the autumn term (end-November 2020). Results: In round 1, 12,026 participants (59.1% students, 40.9% staff) in 131 schools had 43,091 swabs taken. Weekly SARS-CoV-2 infection rates were 3.9 (1/25,537;95% CI, 0.10-21.8) and 11.3 (2/17,554;95% CI, 1.4-41.2) per 100,000 students and staff. At recruitment, N-antibody positivity in 45 schools was 11.1% (91/817;95%CI, 9.2-13.5%) in students and 15.1% (209/1381;95%CI, 13.3-17.1%) in staff, similar to local community seroprevalence. Seropositivity was not associated with school attendance during lockdown or staff contact with students. Round 2 participation was 73.7% (1,619/2,198) and only five (4 students, 1 staff) seroconverted. In round 3, when 61.9% (1,361/2,198) of round 1 participants were re-tested, seroconversion rates were 3.4% (19/562;95%CI, 2.0-5.2) in students and 3.9% (36/930;95%CI, 2.7-5.3) in staff. Conclusions: SARS-CoV-2 infection rates, assessed using nasal swabs for acute infection and serum antibodies for prior infection, were low following partial and full reopening of primary schools in England.Funding Statement: This surveillance was funded by the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC).Declaration of Interests: None to declare.Ethics Approval Statement: The surveillance protocol was approved by the Public Health England Research Ethics Governance Group (R&D REGG Ref: NR0209, 16 May 2020).

5.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-305023

ABSTRACT

Background: The reopening of schools during the COVID-19 pandemic has raised concerns about widespread infection and transmission of SARS-CoV-2 in educational settings. In June 2020, Public Health England (PHE) initiated prospective national surveillance of SARS-CoV-2 in primary schools across England (sKIDs). We used this opportunity to assess the feasibility and agreeability of large-scale surveillance and testing for SARS-CoV-2 infections in school among staff, parents and students.Methods: Staff and students in 131 primary schools were asked to complete a questionnaire at recruitment and provide weekly nasal swabs for SARS-CoV-2 RT-PCR testing (n=86) or swabs with blood samples for antibody testing (n=45) at the beginning and end the summer half-term. In six blood sampling schools, students were asked to complete a pictorial questionnaire before and after their investigations.Results: In total, 134 children aged 4-7 years (n=40) or 8-11 years (n=95) completed the pictorial questionnaire fully or partially. Prior to sampling, oral fluid sampling was the most acceptable test (107/132, 81%) followed by throat swabs (80/134, 59%), nose swabs (77/132, 58%), and blood tests (48/130, 37%). Younger students were more nervous about all tests than older students but, after completing their tests, most children reported a “better than expected” experience with all the investigations. Students were more likely to agree to additional testing for nose swabs (93/113, 82%) and oral fluid (93/114, 82%), followed by throat swabs (85/113, 75%) and blood tests (72/108, 67%). Parents (n=3,994) and staff (n=2,580) selected a preference for weekly testing with nose swabs, throat swabs or oral fluid sampling, although staff were more flexible about testing frequency. Conclusions: Primary school staff and parents were supportive of regular tests for SARS-CoV-2 and selected a preference for weekly testing. Children preferred nose swabs and oral fluids over throat swabs or blood sampling.Funding Statement: This surveillance was internally funded by PHE and did not receive any specific grant funding from agencies in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.Declaration of Interests: None.Ethics Approval Statement: PHE has legal permission, provided by Regulation 3 of The Health Service (Control of Patient Information) Regulations 2002, to process patient confidential information for national surveillance of communicable diseases and as such, individual patient consent is not required.

6.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-305022

ABSTRACT

Background: The reopening of schools during the COVID-19 pandemic has raised concerns about widespread infection and transmission of SARS-CoV-2 in educational settings. In June 2020, Public Health England (PHE) initiated prospective national surveillance of SARS-CoV-2 in primary schools across England (sKIDs). We used this opportunity to assess the feasibility and agreeability of large-scale surveillance and testing for SARS-CoV-2 infections in school among staff, parents and students.Methods: Staff and students in 131 primary schools were asked to complete a questionnaire at recruitment and provide weekly nasal swabs for SARS-CoV-2 RT-PCR testing (n=86) or swabs with blood samples for antibody testing (n=45) at the beginning and end the summer half-term. In six blood sampling schools, students were asked to complete a pictorial questionnaire before and after their investigations.Results: In total, 134 children aged 4-7 years (n=40) or 8-11 years (n=95) completed the pictorial questionnaire fully or partially. Prior to sampling, oral fluid sampling was the most acceptable test (107/132, 81%) followed by throat swabs (80/134, 59%), nose swabs (77/132, 58%), and blood tests (48/130, 37%). Younger students were more nervous about all tests than older students but, after completing their tests, most children reported a “better than expected” experience with all the investigations. Students were more likely to agree to additional testing for nose swabs (93/113, 82%) and oral fluid (93/114, 82%), followed by throat swabs (85/113, 75%) and blood tests (72/108, 67%). Parents (n=3,994) and staff (n=2,580) selected a preference for weekly testing with nose swabs, throat swabs or oral fluid sampling, although staff were more flexible about testing frequency. Conclusions: Primary school staff and parents were supportive of regular tests for SARS-CoV-2 and selected a preference for weekly testing. Children preferred nose swabs and oral fluids over throat swabs or blood sampling.

7.
2021.
Preprint in English | Other preprints | ID: ppcovidwho-294092

ABSTRACT

Background Most individuals with COVID-19 will recover without sequelae, but some will develop long- term multi-system impairments. The definition, duration, prevalence and symptoms associated with long COVID, however, have not been established. Methods Public Health England (PHE) initiated longitudinal surveillance of clinical and non-clinical healthcare workers for monthly blood sampling for SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in March 2020. Eight months after enrolment, participants completed an online questionnaire including 72 symptoms in the preceding month. Symptomatic mild-to-moderate cases with confirmed COVID-19 were compared with asymptomatic, seronegative controls. Multivariable logistic regression was used to identify independent symptoms associated with long COVID. Results All 2,147 participants were contacted and 1,671 (77.8%) completed the questionnaire, including 140 (8.4%) cases and 1,160 controls. At a median of 7.5 (IQR 7.1-7.8) months after infection, 20 cases (14.3%) had ongoing (4/140, 2.9%) or episodic (16/140, 11.4%) symptoms. We identified three clusters of symptoms associated with long COVID, those affecting the sensory (ageusia, anosmia, loss of appetite and blurred vision), neurological (forgetfulness, short-term memory loss and confusion/brain fog) and cardiorespiratory (chest tightness/pain, unusual fatigue, breathlessness after minimal exertion/at rest, palpitations) systems. The sensory cluster had the highest association with being a case (aOR 5.25, 95% CI 3.45-8.01). Dermatological, gynaecological, gastrointestinal or mental health symptoms were not significantly different between cases and controls. Conclusions Most persistent symptoms reported following mild COVID-19 were equally common in cases and controls. While all three clusters identified had a strong association with previous COVID-19 infection, the sensory cluster had the highest specificity and strength of association. Key points Compared to controls, we identified three clusters of symptoms affecting the sensory, neurological and cardiorespiratory systems that were more prevalent among cases. Notably, gastrointestinal and dermatological symptoms and symptoms related to mental health were as prevalent among cases as controls.

8.
PLoS One ; 16(8): e0255517, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1376622

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The reopening of schools during the COVID-19 pandemic has raised concerns about widespread infection and transmission of SARS-CoV-2 in educational settings. In June 2020, Public Health England (PHE) initiated prospective national surveillance of SARS-CoV-2 in primary schools across England (sKIDs). We used this opportunity to assess the feasibility and agreeability of large-scale surveillance and testing for SARS-CoV-2 infections in school among staff, parents and students. METHODS: Staff and students in 131 primary schools were asked to complete a questionnaire at recruitment and provide weekly nasal swabs for SARS-CoV-2 RT-PCR testing (n = 86) or swabs with blood samples for antibody testing (n = 45) at the beginning and end the summer half-term. In six blood sampling schools, students were asked to complete a pictorial questionnaire before and after their investigations. RESULTS: In total, 135 children aged 4-7 years (n = 40) or 8-11 years (n = 95) completed the pictorial questionnaire fully or partially. Prior to sampling, oral fluid sampling was the most acceptable test (107/132, 81%) followed by throat swabs (80/134, 59%), nose swabs (77/132, 58%), and blood tests (48/130, 37%). Younger students were more nervous about all tests than older students but, after completing their tests, most children reported a "better than expected" experience with all the investigations. Students were more likely to agree to additional testing for nose swabs (93/113, 82%) and oral fluid (93/114, 82%), followed by throat swabs (85/113, 75%) and blood tests (72/108, 67%). Parents (n = 3,994) and staff (n = 2,580) selected a preference for weekly testing with nose swabs, throat swabs or oral fluid sampling, although staff were more flexible about testing frequency. CONCLUSIONS: Primary school staff and parents were supportive of regular tests for SARS-CoV-2 and selected a preference for weekly testing. Children preferred nose swabs and oral fluids over throat swabs or blood sampling.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/diagnosis , Educational Personnel/psychology , Students/psychology , COVID-19/virology , COVID-19 Testing/methods , Child , Child, Preschool , Cross-Sectional Studies , England , Humans , Nasopharynx/virology , Parents/psychology , Pharynx/virology , Prospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Schools , Surveys and Questionnaires
9.
EClinicalMedicine ; 37: 100948, 2021 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1272390

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Older children have higher SARS-CoV-2 infection rates than younger children. We investigated SARS-CoV-2 infection, seroprevalence and seroconversion rates in staff and students following the full reopening of all secondary schools in England. METHODS: Public Health England (PHE) invited secondary schools in six regions (East and West London, Hertfordshire, Derbyshire, Manchester and Birmingham) to participate in SARS-CoV-2 surveillance during the 2020/21 academic year. Participants had nasal swabs for RT-PCR and blood samples for SARS-CoV-2 antibodies at the beginning (September 2020) and end (December 2020) of the autumn term. Multivariable logistic regression was used to assess independent risk factors for seropositivity and seroconversion. FINDINGS: Eighteen schools in six regions enrolled 2,209 participants, including 1,189 (53.8%) students and 1,020 (46.2%) staff. SARS-CoV-2 infection rates were not significantly different between students and staff in round one (5/948; [0.53%] vs. 2/876 [0.23%]; p = 0.46) or round two (10/948 [1.05%] vs. 7/886 [0.79%]; p = 0.63), and similar to national prevalence. None of four and 7/15 (47%) sequenced strains in rounds 1 and 2 were the highly transmissible SARS-CoV-2 B.1.1.7 variant. In round 1, antibody seropositivity was higher in students than staff (114/893 [12.8%] vs. 79/861 [9.2%]; p = 0.016), but similar in round 2 (117/893 [13.1%] vs.117/872 [13.3%]; p = 0.85), comparable to local community seroprevalence. Between the two rounds, 8.7% (57/652) staff and 6.6% (36/549) students seroconverted (p = 0.16). INTERPRETATION: In secondary schools, SARS-CoV-2 infection, seropositivity and seroconversion rates were similar in staff and students, and comparable to local community rates. Ongoing surveillance will be important for monitoring the impact of new variants in educational settings.

10.
Lancet Reg Health Eur ; 6: 100120, 2021 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1233524

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The full reopening of schools in September 2020 was associated with an increase in COVID-19 cases and outbreaks in educational settings across England. METHODS: Primary and secondary schools reporting an outbreak (≥2 laboratory-confirmed cases within 14 days) to Public Health England (PHE) between 31 August and 18 October 2020 were contacted in November 2020 to complete an online questionnaire. INTERPRETATION: There were 969 school outbreaks reported to PHE, comprising 2% (n = 450) of primary schools and 10% (n = 519) of secondary schools in England. Of the 369 geographically-representative schools contacted, 179 completed the questionnaire (100 primary schools, 79 secondary schools) and 2,314 cases were reported. Outbreaks were larger and across more year groups in secondary schools than in primary schools. Teaching staff were more likely to be the index case in primary (48/100, 48%) than secondary (25/79, 32%) school outbreaks (P = 0.027). When an outbreak occurred, attack rates were higher in staff (881/17,362; 5.07; 95%CI, 4.75-5.41) than students, especially primary school teaching staff (378/3852; 9.81%; 95%CI, 8.90-10.82%) compared to secondary school teaching staff (284/7146; 3.97%; 95%CI, 3.79-5.69%). Secondary school students (1105/91,919; 1.20%; 95%CI, 1.13-1.28%) had higher attack rates than primary school students (328/39,027; 0.84%; 95%CI, 0.75-0.94%). CONCLUSIONS: A higher proportion of secondary schools than primary schools reported a COVID-19 outbreak and experienced larger outbreaks across multiple school year groups. The higher attack rate among teaching staff during an outbreak, especially in primary schools, suggests that additional protective measures may be needed. FUNDING: PHE.

11.
Lancet Reg Health Eur ; 3: 100075, 2021 Apr.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1144857

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Paediatric Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome temporally associated with SARS-CoV-2 (PIMS-TS), first identified in April 2020, shares features of both Kawasaki disease (KD) and toxic shock syndrome (TSS). The surveillance describes the epidemiology and clinical characteristics of PIMS-TS in the United Kingdom and Ireland. METHODS: Public Health England initiated prospective national surveillance of PIMS-TS through the British Paediatric Surveillance Unit. Paediatricians were contacted monthly to report PIMS-TS, KD and TSS cases electronically and complete a detailed clinical questionnaire. Cases with symptom onset between 01 March and 15 June 2020 were included. FINDINGS: There were 216 cases with features of PIMS-TS alone, 13 with features of both PIMS-TS and KD, 28 with features of PIMS-TS and TSS and 11 with features of PIMS-TS, KD and TSS, with differences in age, ethnicity, clinical presentation and disease severity between the phenotypic groups. There was a strong geographical and temporal association between SARS-CoV-2 infection rates and PIMS-TS cases. Of those tested, 14.8% (39/264) children had a positive SARS-CoV-2 RT-PCR, and 63.6% (75/118) were positive for SARS-CoV-2 antibodies. In total 44·0% (118/268) required intensive care, which was more common in cases with a TSS phenotype. Three of five children with cardiac arrest had TSS phenotype. Three children (1·1%) died. INTERPRETATION: The strong association between SARS-CoV-2 infection and PIMS-TS emphasises the importance of maintaining low community infection rates to reduce the risk of this rare but severe complication in children and adolescents. Close follow-up will be important to monitor long-term complications in children with PIMS-TS. FUNDING: PHE.

12.
J Infect ; 82(5): 162-169, 2021 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1142042

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Antibody waning after SARS-CoV-2 infection may result in reduction in long-term immunity following natural infection and vaccination, and is therefore a major public health issue. We undertook prospective serosurveillance in a large cohort of healthy adults from the start of the epidemic in England. METHODS: Clinical and non-clinical healthcare workers were recruited across three English regions and tested monthly from March to November 2020 for SARS-CoV-2 spike (S) protein and nucleoprotein (N) antibodies using five different immunoassays. In positive individuals, antibody responses and long-term trends were modelled using mixed effects regression. FINDINGS: In total, 2246 individuals attended 12,247 visits and 264 were seropositive in ≥ 2 assays. Most seroconversions occurred between March and April 2020. The assays showed > 85% agreement for ever-positivity, although this changed markedly over time. Antibodies were detected earlier with Abbott (N) but declined rapidly thereafter. With the EuroImmun (S) and receptor-binding domain (RBD) assays, responses increased for 4 weeks then fell until week 12-16 before stabilising. For Roche (N), responses increased until 8 weeks, stabilised, then declined, but most remained above the positive threshold. For Roche (S), responses continued to climb over the full 24 weeks, with no sero-reversions. Predicted proportions sero-reverting after 52 weeks were 100% for Abbott, 59% (95% credible interval 50-68%) Euroimmun, 41% (30-52%) RBD, 10% (8-14%) Roche (N) < 2% Roche (S). INTERPRETATION: Trends in SARS-CoV-2 antibodies following infection are highly dependent on the assay used. Ongoing serosurveillance using multiple assays is critical for monitoring the course and long-term progression of SARS-CoV-2 antibodies.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Adult , Antibodies, Viral , Antibody Formation , England , Health Personnel , Humans , Prospective Studies , Public Health
13.
Lancet Child Adolesc Health ; 5(6): 417-427, 2021 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1142360

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Little is known about the risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection and transmission in educational settings. Public Health England initiated a study, COVID-19 Surveillance in School KIDs (sKIDs), in primary schools when they partially reopened from June 1, 2020, after the first national lockdown in England to estimate the incidence of symptomatic and asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infection, seroprevalence, and seroconversion in staff and students. METHODS: sKIDs, an active, prospective, surveillance study, included two groups: the weekly swabbing group and the blood sampling group. The swabbing group underwent weekly nasal swabs for at least 4 weeks after partial school reopening during the summer half-term (June to mid-July, 2020). The blood sampling group additionally underwent blood sampling for serum SARS-CoV-2 antibodies to measure previous infection at the beginning (June 1-19, 2020) and end (July 3-23, 2020) of the summer half-term, and, after full reopening in September, 2020, and at the end of the autumn term (Nov 23-Dec 18, 2020). We tested for predictors of SARS-CoV-2 antibody positivity using logistic regression. We calculated antibody seroconversion rates for participants who were seronegative in the first round and were tested in at least two rounds. FINDINGS: During the summer half-term, 11 966 participants (6727 students, 4628 staff, and 611 with unknown staff or student status) in 131 schools had 40 501 swabs taken. Weekly SARS-CoV-2 infection rates were 4·1 (one of 24 463; 95% CI 0·1-21·8) per 100 000 students and 12·5 (two of 16 038; 1·5-45·0) per 100 000 staff. At recruitment, in 45 schools, 91 (11·2%; 95% CI 7·9-15·1) of 816 students and 209 (15·1%; 11·9-18·9) of 1381 staff members were positive for SARS-CoV-2 antibodies, similar to local community seroprevalence. Seropositivity was not associated with school attendance during lockdown (p=0·13 for students and p=0·20 for staff) or staff contact with students (p=0·37). At the end of the summer half-term, 603 (73·9%) of 816 students and 1015 (73·5%) of 1381 staff members were still participating in the surveillance, and five (four students, one staff member) seroconverted. By December, 2020, 55 (5·1%; 95% CI 3·8-6·5) of 1085 participants who were seronegative at recruitment (in June, 2020) had seroconverted, including 19 (5·6%; 3·4-8·6) of 340 students and 36 (4·8%; 3·4-6·6) of 745 staff members (p=0·60). INTERPRETATION: In England, SARS-CoV-2 infection rates were low in primary schools following their partial and full reopening in June and September, 2020. FUNDING: UK Department of Health and Social Care.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , Schools , Antibodies, Viral/blood , Asymptomatic Infections , COVID-19/diagnosis , Child , Child, Preschool , England/epidemiology , Female , Humans , Incidence , Male , Prospective Studies , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Seroconversion , Seroepidemiologic Studies
SELECTION OF CITATIONS
SEARCH DETAIL