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1.
EuropePMC; 2022.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-330860

ABSTRACT

Variants of concern (VOCs) of SARS-CoV-2 have caused resurging waves of infections worldwide. In the Netherlands, Alpha, Beta, Gamma and Delta variants circulated widely between September 2020 and August 2021. To understand how various control measures had impacted the spread of these VOCs, we analyzed 39,844 SARS-CoV-2 genomes collected under the Dutch national surveillance program. We found that all four VOCs were introduced before targeted flight restrictions were imposed on countries where the VOCs first emerged. Importantly, foreign introductions, predominantly from other European countries, continued during these restrictions. Our findings show that flight restrictions had limited effectiveness in deterring VOC introductions due to the strength of regional land travel importation risks. We also found that the Alpha and Delta variants largely circulated more populous regions with international connections after their respective introduction before asymmetric bidirectional transmissions occurred with the rest of the country and the variant dominated infections in the Netherlands. As countries consider scaling down SARS-CoV-2 surveillance efforts in the post-crisis phase of the pandemic, our results highlight that robust surveillance in regions of early spread is important for providing timely information for variant detection and outbreak control.

2.
Emerg Infect Dis ; 28(5)2022 Mar 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1736727

ABSTRACT

We report a severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 superspreading event in the Netherlands after distancing rules were lifted in nightclubs, despite requiring a negative test or vaccination. This occurrence illustrates the potential for rapid dissemination of variants in largely unvaccinated populations under such conditions. We detected subsequent community transmission of this strain.

3.
Antimicrob Resist Infect Control ; 10(1): 137, 2021 09 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1440955

ABSTRACT

We describe the lessons learned during a SARS-CoV-2 variant-of-concern Alpha outbreak investigation at a normal care unit in a university hospital in Amsterdam in December 2020. The outbreak consisted of nine nurses and two roomed-in patient family members. (attack rate 18%). One nurse tested positive with a phylogenetically distinct variant, after a documented infection 83 days prior. Three key points were taken from this investigation. First, it was controlled by adherence to existing guidelines, despite increased transmissibility of the variant. Second, viral sequencing can inform transmission cluster inference, but the epidemiological context is essential to draw appropriate conclusions. Third, reinfections with Alpha variants can occur rapidly after primary infection.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Reinfection/virology , COVID-19/virology , Cross Infection/epidemiology , Cross Infection/virology , Disease Outbreaks , Guideline Adherence , Humans , Infection Control , Inpatients , Netherlands , Nurses , Phylogeny , Reinfection/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics
4.
JAMA Netw Open ; 4(7): e2118554, 2021 07 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1328587

ABSTRACT

Importance: It is unclear when, where, and by whom health care workers (HCWs) working in hospitals are infected with SARS-CoV-2. Objective: To determine how often and in what manner nosocomial SARS-CoV-2 infection occurs in HCW groups with varying exposure to patients with COVID-19. Design, Setting, and Participants: This cohort study comprised 4 weekly measurements of SARS-CoV-2-specific antibodies and collection of questionnaires from March 23 to June 25, 2020, combined with phylogenetic and epidemiologic transmission analyses at 2 university hospitals in the Netherlands. Included individuals were HCWs working in patient care for those with COVID-19, HCWs working in patient care for those without COVID-19, and HCWs not working in patient care. Data were analyzed from August through December 2020. Exposures: Varying work-related exposure to patients infected with SARS-CoV-2. Main Outcomes and Measures: The cumulative incidence of and time to SARS-CoV-2 infection, defined as the presence of SARS-CoV-2-specific antibodies in blood samples, were measured. Results: Among 801 HCWs, there were 439 HCWs working in patient care for those with COVID-19, 164 HCWs working in patient care for those without COVID-19, and 198 HCWs not working in patient care. There were 580 (72.4%) women, and the median (interquartile range) age was 36 (29-50) years. The incidence of SARS-CoV-2 was increased among HCWs working in patient care for those with COVID-19 (54 HCWs [13.2%; 95% CI, 9.9%-16.4%]) compared with HCWs working in patient care for those without COVID-19 (11 HCWs [6.7%; 95% CI, 2.8%-10.5%]; hazard ratio [HR], 2.25; 95% CI, 1.17-4.30) and HCWs not working in patient care (7 HCWs [3.6%; 95% CI, 0.9%-6.1%]; HR, 3.92; 95% CI, 1.79-8.62). Among HCWs caring for patients with COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2 cumulative incidence was increased among HCWs working on COVID-19 wards (32 of 134 HCWs [25.7%; 95% CI, 17.6%-33.1%]) compared with HCWs working on intensive care units (13 of 186 HCWs [7.1%; 95% CI, 3.3%-10.7%]; HR, 3.64; 95% CI, 1.91-6.94), and HCWs working in emergency departments (7 of 102 HCWs [8.0%; 95% CI, 2.5%-13.1%]; HR, 3.29; 95% CI, 1.52-7.14). Epidemiologic data combined with phylogenetic analyses on COVID-19 wards identified 3 potential HCW-to-HCW transmission clusters. No patient-to-HCW transmission clusters could be identified in transmission analyses. Conclusions and Relevance: This study found that HCWs working on COVID-19 wards were at increased risk for nosocomial SARS-CoV-2 infection with an important role for HCW-to-HCW transmission. These findings suggest that infection among HCWs deserves more consideration in infection prevention practice.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/blood , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/genetics , Personnel, Hospital , Phylogeny , Population Surveillance , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Adult , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19 Serological Testing , Cohort Studies , Female , Humans , Incidence , Male , Middle Aged
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