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1.
Open Forum Infect Dis ; 9(5): ofac154, 2022 May.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1831307

ABSTRACT

Background: The aim of this study was to estimate severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection rates in the small rural state of Arkansas, using SARS-CoV-2 antibody prevalence as an indicator of infection. Methods: We collected residual serum samples from adult outpatients seen at hospitals or clinics in Arkansas for non-coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)-related reasons. A total of 5804 samples were identified over 3 time periods: 15 August-5 September 2020 (time period 1), 12 September-24 October 2020 (time period 2), and 7 November-19 December 2020 (time period 3). Results: The age-, sex-, race-, and ethnicity-standardized SARS-CoV-2 seroprevalence during each period, from 2.6% in time period 1 to 4.1% in time period 2 and 7.4% in time period 3. No statistically significant difference in seroprevalence was found based on age, sex, or residence (urban vs rural). However, we found higher seroprevalence rates in each time period for Hispanics (17.6%, 20.6%, and 23.4%, respectively) and non-Hispanic Blacks (4.8%, 5.4%, and 8.9%, respectively) relative to non-Hispanic Whites (1.1%, 2.6%, and 5.5%, respectively). Conclusions: Our data imply that the number of Arkansas residents infected with SARS-CoV-2 rose steadily from 2.6% in August to 7.4% in December 2020. There was no statistical difference in seroprevalence between rural and urban locales. Hispanics and Blacks had higher rates of SARS-CoV-2 antibodies than Whites, indicating that SARS-CoV-2 spread disproportionately in racial and ethnic minorities during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic.

2.
J Pediatric Infect Dis Soc ; 11(6): 248-256, 2022 Jun 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1746859

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) seroprevalence studies largely focus on adults, but little is known about spread in children. We determined SARS-CoV-2 seroprevalence in children and adolescents from Arkansas over the first year of the coronavirus disease of 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. METHODS: We tested remnant serum samples from children ages 1-18 years who visited Arkansas hospitals or clinics for non-COVID-19-related reasons from April 2020 through April 2021 for SARS-CoV-2 antibodies. We used univariable and multivariable regression models to determine the association between seropositivity and participant characteristics. RESULTS: Among 2357 participants, seroprevalence rose from 7.9% in April/May 2020 (95% CI, 4.9-10.9) to 25.0% in April 2021 (95% CI, 21.5-28.5). Hispanic and black children had a higher association with antibody positivity than non-Hispanic and white children, respectively, in multiple sampling periods. CONCLUSIONS: By spring 2021, most children in Arkansas were not infected with SARS-CoV-2. With the emergence of SARS-CoV-2 variants, recognition of long-term effects of COVID-19, and the lack of an authorized pediatric SARS-CoV-2 vaccine at the time, these results highlight the importance of including children in SARS-CoV-2 public health, clinical care, and research strategies.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pandemics , Adolescent , Adult , Antibodies, Viral , Arkansas/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19 Vaccines , Child , Child, Preschool , Humans , Infant , SARS-CoV-2 , Seroepidemiologic Studies
3.
Open Forum Infect Dis ; 9(1): ofab602, 2022 Jan.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1621660

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 monoclonal antibodies revolutionized the treatment for eligible patients who have tested positive for SARS CoV-2 infection in an ambulatory setting. In this short report, we describe our experience assisting in the distribution of monoclonal antibodies in Arkansas during the summer surge of the delta variant.

5.
2021.
Preprint in English | Other preprints | ID: ppcovidwho-294284

ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT Background SARS-CoV-2 seroprevalence studies have largely focused on adults but little is known about spread in children. We determined SARS-CoV-2 seroprevalence in children and adolescents from Arkansas over the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic. Methods We tested remnant serum samples from children from 1–18 years who visited Arkansas hospitals or clinics for non-COVID19-related reasons from April, 2020 through April, 2021 for SARS-CoV-2 antibodies. We used univariable and multivariable regression models to determine association between seropositivity and participant characteristics. Results Among 2400 participants, seroprevalence rose from 7.9% in April/May 2020 (95% CI, 4.9-10.9%) to 25.8% in April 2021 (95% CI, 22.2-29.3%). Hispanic and black children had a significantly higher association with antibody positivity than white children in multiple sampling periods. Conclusions By spring 2021, most children in Arkansas had not been infected with SARS-CoV-2. With the emergence of SARS-CoV-2 variants, recognition of long-term effects of COVID-19, and the lack of an authorized pediatric SARS-CoV-2 vaccine, these results highlight the importance of including children in SARS-CoV-2 public health, clinical care, and research strategies. These findings are important for state and local officials as they consider measures to limit SARS-CoV-2 spread in schools and daycares for the 2021–2022 school year.

6.
Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol ; : 1-24, 2021 Nov 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1527934

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: Characterize and compare SARS-CoV-2-specific immune responses in plasma and gingival crevicular fluid (GCF) from nursing home residents during and after natural infection. DESIGN: Prospective cohort. SETTING: Nursing home. PARTICIPANTS: SARS-CoV-2-infected nursing home residents. METHODS: A convenience sample of 14 SARS-CoV-2-infected nursing home residents, enrolled 4-13 days after real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction diagnosis, were followed for 42 days. Post diagnosis, plasma SARS-CoV-2-specific pan-Immunoglobulin (Ig), IgG, IgA, IgM, and neutralizing antibodies were measured at 5 timepoints and GCF SARS-CoV-2-specific IgG and IgA were measured at 4 timepoints. RESULTS: All participants demonstrated immune responses to SARS-CoV-2 infection. Among 12 phlebotomized participants, plasma was positive for pan-Ig and IgG in all 12, neutralizing antibodies in 11, IgM in 10, and IgA in 9. Among 14 participants with GCF specimens, GCF was positive for IgG in 13 and IgA in 12. Immunoglobulin responses in plasma and GCF had similar kinetics; median times to peak antibody response was similar across specimen types (4 weeks for IgG; 3 weeks for IgA). Participants with pan-Ig, IgG, and IgA detected in plasma and GCF IgG remained positive through this evaluation's end 46-55 days post-diagnosis. All participants were viral culture negative by the first detection of antibodies. CONCLUSIONS: Nursing home residents had detectable SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in plasma and GCF after infection. Kinetics of antibodies detected in GCF mirrored those from plasma. Non-invasive GCF may be useful for detecting and monitoring immunologic responses in populations unable or unwilling to be phlebotomized.

7.
Clin Infect Dis ; 73(Suppl 1): S58-S64, 2021 07 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1315676

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) testing remains essential for early identification and clinical management of cases. We compared the diagnostic performance of 3 specimen types for characterizing SARS-CoV-2 in infected nursing home residents. METHODS: A convenience sample of 17 residents were enrolled within 15 days of first positive SARS-CoV-2 result by real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and prospectively followed for 42 days. Anterior nasal swabs (AN), oropharyngeal swabs (OP), and saliva specimens (SA) were collected on the day of enrollment, every 3 days for the first 21 days, and then weekly for 21 days. Specimens were tested for presence of SARS-CoV-2 RNA using RT-PCR and replication-competent virus by viral culture. RESULTS: Comparing the 3 specimen types collected from each participant at each time point, the concordance of paired RT-PCR results ranged from 80% to 88%. After the first positive result, SA and OP were RT-PCR-positive for ≤48 days; AN were RT-PCR-positive for ≤33 days. AN had the highest percentage of RT-PCR-positive results (21/26 [81%]) when collected ≤10 days of participants' first positive result. Eleven specimens were positive by viral culture: 9 AN collected ≤19 days following first positive result and 2 OP collected ≤5 days following first positive result. CONCLUSIONS: AN, OP, and SA were effective methods for repeated testing in this population. More AN than OP were positive by viral culture. SA and OP remained RT-PCR-positive longer than AN, which could lead to unnecessary interventions if RT-PCR detection occurred after viral shedding has likely ceased.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Arkansas , Humans , Nursing Homes , RNA, Viral/genetics
8.
Clin Infect Dis ; 73(Suppl 1): S58-S64, 2021 07 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1205577

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) testing remains essential for early identification and clinical management of cases. We compared the diagnostic performance of 3 specimen types for characterizing SARS-CoV-2 in infected nursing home residents. METHODS: A convenience sample of 17 residents were enrolled within 15 days of first positive SARS-CoV-2 result by real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and prospectively followed for 42 days. Anterior nasal swabs (AN), oropharyngeal swabs (OP), and saliva specimens (SA) were collected on the day of enrollment, every 3 days for the first 21 days, and then weekly for 21 days. Specimens were tested for presence of SARS-CoV-2 RNA using RT-PCR and replication-competent virus by viral culture. RESULTS: Comparing the 3 specimen types collected from each participant at each time point, the concordance of paired RT-PCR results ranged from 80% to 88%. After the first positive result, SA and OP were RT-PCR-positive for ≤48 days; AN were RT-PCR-positive for ≤33 days. AN had the highest percentage of RT-PCR-positive results (21/26 [81%]) when collected ≤10 days of participants' first positive result. Eleven specimens were positive by viral culture: 9 AN collected ≤19 days following first positive result and 2 OP collected ≤5 days following first positive result. CONCLUSIONS: AN, OP, and SA were effective methods for repeated testing in this population. More AN than OP were positive by viral culture. SA and OP remained RT-PCR-positive longer than AN, which could lead to unnecessary interventions if RT-PCR detection occurred after viral shedding has likely ceased.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Arkansas , Humans , Nursing Homes , RNA, Viral/genetics
9.
Open Forum Infect Dis ; 8(3): ofab048, 2021 Mar.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1135878

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: To estimate the infectious period of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) in older adults with underlying conditions, we assessed duration of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) symptoms, reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) positivity, and culture positivity among nursing home residents. METHODS: We enrolled residents within 15 days of their first positive SARS-CoV-2 test (diagnosis) at an Arkansas facility from July 7 to 15, 2020 and instead them for 42 days. Every 3 days for 21 days and then weekly, we assessed COVID-19 symptoms, collected specimens (oropharyngeal, anterior nares, and saliva), and reviewed medical charts. Blood for serology was collected on days 0, 6, 12, 21, and 42. Infectivity was defined by positive culture. Duration of culture positivity was compared with duration of COVID-19 symptoms and RT-PCR positivity. Data were summarized using measures of central tendency, frequencies, and proportions. RESULTS: We enrolled 17 of 39 (44%) eligible residents. Median participant age was 82 years (range, 58-97 years). All had ≥3 underlying conditions. Median duration of RT-PCR positivity was 22 days (interquartile range [IQR], 8-31 days) from diagnosis; median duration of symptoms was 42 days (IQR, 28-49 days). Of 9 (53%) participants with any culture-positive specimens, 1 (11%) severely immunocompromised participant remained culture-positive 19 days from diagnosis; 8 of 9 (89%) were culture-positive ≤8 days from diagnosis. Seroconversion occurred in 12 of 12 (100%) surviving participants with ≥1 blood specimen; all participants were culture-negative before seroconversion. CONCLUSIONS: Duration of infectivity was considerably shorter than duration of symptoms and RT-PCR positivity. Severe immunocompromise may prolong SARS-CoV-2 infectivity. Seroconversion indicated noninfectivity in this cohort.

10.
Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol ; 43(1): 99-101, 2022 Jan.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1065728

ABSTRACT

The sensitivity of the BinaxNOW coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) Ag Card test (BinaxNOW) was 51.6% among asymptomatic healthcare employees relative to real-time reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (rRT-PCR). The odds of a positive BinaxNOW test decreased as cycle threshold value increased. BinaxNOW could facilitate rapid detection and isolation of asymptomatically infected persons in some settings while rRT-PCR results are pending.


Subject(s)
Antigens, Viral/analysis , COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing , COVID-19 Testing/methods , COVID-19 , Asymptomatic Infections , COVID-19/diagnosis , Health Personnel , Humans , RNA-Directed DNA Polymerase , Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction , Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction , Sensitivity and Specificity
11.
MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep ; 70(1): 20-23, 2021 Jan 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1055331

ABSTRACT

Preventing transmission of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), in colleges and universities requires mitigation strategies that address on- and off-campus congregate living settings as well as extracurricular activities and other social gatherings (1-4). At the start of the academic year, sorority and fraternity organizations host a series of recruitment activities known as rush week; rush week culminates with bid day, when selections are announced. At university A in Arkansas, sorority rush week (for women) was held during August 17-22, 2020, and consisted of on- and off-campus social gatherings, including an outdoor bid day event on August 22. Fraternity rush week (for men) occurred during August 27-31, with bid day scheduled for September 5. During August 22-September 5, university A-associated COVID-19 cases were reported to the Arkansas Department of Health (ADH). A total of 965 confirmed and probable COVID-19 cases associated with university A were identified, with symptom onset occurring during August 20-September 5, 2020; 31% of the patients with these cases reported involvement in any fraternity or sorority activity. Network analysis identified 54 gatherings among all linkages of cases to places of residence and cases to events, 49 (91%) were linked by participation in fraternity and sorority activities accounting for 42 (72%) links among gatherings. On September 4, university A banned gatherings of ≥10 persons, and fraternity bid day was held virtually. The rapid increase in COVID-19 cases was likely facilitated by on- and off-campus congregate living settings and activities, and health departments should work together with student organizations and university leadership to ensure compliance with mitigation measures.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , College Fraternities and Sororities/organization & administration , Community-Acquired Infections/epidemiology , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Arkansas/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Child , Child, Preschool , Community-Acquired Infections/prevention & control , Female , Humans , Infant , Infant, Newborn , Male , Middle Aged , Universities , Young Adult
12.
Transfusion ; 60(12): 2828-2833, 2020 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-808782

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Arkansas is a rural state of 3 million people. It is ranked fifth for poverty nationally. The first case of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in Arkansas occurred on 11 March 2020. Since then, approximately 8% of all Arkansans have tested positive. Given the resource limitations of Arkansas, COVID-19 convalescent plasma (CCP) was explored as a potentially lifesaving, therapeutic option. Therefore, the Arkansas Initiative for Convalescent Plasma was developed to ensure that every Arkansan has access to this therapy. STUDY DESIGN AND METHOD: This brief report describes the statewide collaborative response from hospitals, blood collectors, and the Arkansas Department of Health (ADH) to ensure that CCP was available in a resource-limited state. RESULTS: Early contact tracing by ADH identified individuals who had come into contact with "patient zero" in early March. Within the first week, 32 patients tested positive for COVID-19. The first set of CCP collections occurred on 9 April 2020. Donors had to be triaged carefully in the initial period, as many had recently resolved their symptoms. From our first collections, with appropriate resource and inventory management, we collected sufficient CCP to provide the requested number of units for every patient treated with CCP in Arkansas. CONCLUSIONS: The Arkansas Initiative, a statewide effort to ensure CCP for every patient in a resource-limited state, required careful coordination among key players. Collaboration and resource management was crucial to meet the demand of CCP products and potentially save lives.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/therapy , Health Resources/supply & distribution , Health Services Accessibility/organization & administration , Pandemics , Resource Allocation/organization & administration , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/blood , Arkansas/epidemiology , Blood Banks/economics , Blood Banks/organization & administration , Blood Donors/supply & distribution , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/economics , COVID-19/epidemiology , Community Health Planning/economics , Community Health Planning/organization & administration , Contact Tracing , Convalescence , Health Resources/economics , Health Services Accessibility/economics , Humans , Immunization, Passive , Intersectoral Collaboration , Poverty , Resource Allocation/economics , Rural Population
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