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BMC Infect Dis ; 23(1): 324, 2023 May 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2314188


SARS-CoV-2 is primarily transmitted through person-to-person contacts. It is important to collect information on age-specific contact patterns because SARS-CoV-2 susceptibility, transmission, and morbidity vary by age. To reduce the risk of infection, social distancing measures have been implemented. Social contact data, which identify who has contact with whom especially by age and place are needed to identify high-risk groups and serve to inform the design of non-pharmaceutical interventions. We estimated and used negative binomial regression to compare the number of daily contacts during the first round (April-May 2020) of the Minnesota Social Contact Study, based on respondent's age, gender, race/ethnicity, region, and other demographic characteristics. We used information on the age and location of contacts to generate age-structured contact matrices. Finally, we compared the age-structured contact matrices during the stay-at-home order to pre-pandemic matrices. During the state-wide stay-home order, the mean daily number of contacts was 5.7. We found significant variation in contacts by age, gender, race, and region. Adults between 40 and 50 years had the highest number of contacts. The way race/ethnicity was coded influenced patterns between groups. Respondents living in Black households (which includes many White respondents living in inter-racial households with black family members) had 2.7 more contacts than respondents in White households; we did not find this same pattern when we focused on individual's reported race/ethnicity. Asian or Pacific Islander respondents or in API households had approximately the same number of contacts as respondents in White households. Respondents in Hispanic households had approximately two fewer contacts compared to White households, likewise Hispanic respondents had three fewer contacts than White respondents. Most contacts were with other individuals in the same age group. Compared to the pre-pandemic period, the biggest declines occurred in contacts between children, and contacts between those over 60 with those below 60.

COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Adult , Child , Humans , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Minnesota/epidemiology , Physical Distancing , Ethnicity
Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol ; 43(5): 657-660, 2022 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1253833


Transmission of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) is possible among symptom-free individuals. Patients are avoiding medically necessary healthcare visits for fear of becoming infected in the healthcare setting. We screened 489 symptom-free healthcare workers for SARS-CoV-2 and found no positive results, strongly suggesting that the prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 was <1%.

COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , COVID-19/diagnosis , Delivery of Health Care , Health Personnel , Humans , Mass Screening
medRxiv ; 2020 Nov 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-721060


BACKGROUND: Transmission of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is possible among symptom-free individuals and some patients are avoiding medically necessary healthcare visits for fear of becoming infected in the healthcare setting. Limited data are available on the point prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 infection in symptom-free U.S. healthcare workers (HCW). METHODS: A cross-sectional convenience sample of symptom-free HCWs from the metropolitan area surrounding Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota was enrolled between April 20 th and June 24 th , 2020. A participant self-collected nasopharyngeal swab (NPS) was obtained. SARS-CoV-2 infection was assessed via polymerase chain reaction. Participants were queried about their willingness to repeat a self-collection NPS for diagnostic purposes. We had >95% power to detect at least one positive test if the true underlying prevalence of SARS-CoV2 was ≥1%. RESULTS: Among n=489 participants 80% were female and mean age±SD was 41±11. Participants reported being physicians (14%), nurse practitioners (8%), physician's assistants (4%), nurses (51%), medics (3%), or other which predominantly included laboratory technicians and administrative roles (22%). Exposure to a known/suspected COVID-19 case in the 14 days prior to enrollment was reported in 40% of participants. SARS-CoV-2 was not detected in any participant. Over 95% of participants reported a willingness to repeat a self-collected NP swab in the future. CONCLUSIONS: The point prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 infection was likely <1% in a convenience sample of symptom-free Minnesota healthcare workers from April 20 th and June 24 th , 2020. Self-collected NP swabs are well-tolerated and a viable alternative to provider-collected swabs to preserve PPE.