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1.
SSRN; 2022.
Preprint in English | SSRN | ID: ppcovidwho-333333

ABSTRACT

Background: Work-related exposures play an important role in SARS-CoV-2 transmission, yet few studies have measured the risk of COVID-19 across occupations and industries. Methods: During September 2020 – May 2021, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services collected occupation and industry data as part of routine COVID-19 case investigations. Adults aged 18-64 years with confirmed or probable COVID-19 in Wisconsin were assigned standardized occupation and industry codes. Cumulative incidence rates were weighted for non-response and calculated using full-time equivalent (FTE) workforce denominators from the 2020 American Community Survey. Findings: An estimated 11.6% of workers (347,013 of 2.98 million) in Wisconsin, ages 18-64 years, had COVID-19 from September 2020 to May 2021. The highest incidence by occupation (per 100 full-time equivalents) occurred among personal care and services workers (22.4), healthcare practitioners and support staff (20.7), and protective services workers (20.7). High risk sub-groups included nursing assistants and personal care aides (28.8), childcare workers (25.8), food and beverage service workers (25.3), personal appearance workers (24.4), and law enforcement workers (24.1). By industry, incidence was highest in healthcare (18.6);the highest risk sub-sectors were nursing care facilities (30.5) and warehousing (28.5). Interpretation: This analysis represents one of the most complete examinations to date of COVID-19 incidence by occupation and industry. Our approach demonstrates the value of standardized occupational data collection by public health, and may be a model for improved occupational surveillance elsewhere. Workers at higher risk of SARS-CoV-2 exposure may benefit from targeted workplace COVID-19 vaccination and mitigation efforts.

2.
Clin Infect Dis ; 73(6): e1348-e1355, 2021 09 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1479943

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (rRT-PCR) and antigen tests are important diagnostics for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). Sensitivity of antigen tests has been shown to be lower than that of rRT-PCR; however, data to evaluate epidemiologic characteristics that affect test performance are limited. METHODS: Paired mid-turbinate nasal swabs were collected from university students and staff and tested for SARS-CoV-2 using both Quidel Sofia SARS Antigen Fluorescent Immunoassay (FIA) and rRT-PCR assay. Specimens positive by either rRT-PCR or antigen FIA were placed in viral culture and tested for subgenomic RNA (sgRNA). Logistic regression models were used to evaluate characteristics associated with antigen results, rRT-PCR cycle threshold (Ct) values, sgRNA, and viral culture. RESULTS: Antigen FIA sensitivity was 78.9% and 43.8% among symptomatic and asymptomatic participants, respectively. Among rRT-PCR positive participants, negative antigen results were more likely among asymptomatic participants (odds ratio [OR] 4.6, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.3-15.4) and less likely among participants reporting nasal congestion (OR 0.1, 95% CI: .03-.8). rRT-PCR-positive specimens with higher Ct values (OR 0.5, 95% CI: .4-.8) were less likely, and specimens positive for sgRNA (OR 10.2, 95% CI: 1.6-65.0) more likely, to yield positive virus isolation. Antigen testing was >90% positive in specimens with Ct values < 29. Positive predictive value of antigen test for positive viral culture (57.7%) was similar to that of rRT-PCR (59.3%). CONCLUSIONS: SARS-CoV-2 antigen test advantages include low cost, wide availability and rapid turnaround time, making them important screening tests. The performance of antigen tests may vary with patient characteristics, so performance characteristics should be accounted for when designing testing strategies and interpreting results.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Antigens, Viral , Humans , RNA , Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction , Reverse Transcription , Sensitivity and Specificity , Universities
3.
Emerg Infect Dis ; 27(11): 2776-2785, 2021 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1444021

ABSTRACT

University settings have demonstrated potential for coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreaks; they combine congregate living, substantial social activity, and a young population predisposed to mild illness. Using genomic and epidemiologic data, we describe a COVID-19 outbreak at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, Wisconsin, USA. During August-October 2020, a total of 3,485 students, including 856/6,162 students living in dormitories, tested positive. Case counts began rising during move-in week, August 25-31, 2020, then rose rapidly during September 1-11, 2020. The university initiated multiple prevention efforts, including quarantining 2 dormitories; a subsequent decline in cases was observed. Genomic surveillance of cases from Dane County, in which the university is located, did not find evidence of transmission from a large cluster of cases in the 2 quarantined dorms during the outbreak. Coordinated implementation of prevention measures can reduce COVID-19 spread in university settings and may limit spillover to the surrounding community.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Universities , Disease Outbreaks , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Wisconsin/epidemiology
4.
Clin Infect Dis ; 73(Suppl 1): S45-S53, 2021 07 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1315688

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: High-frequency, rapid-turnaround severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) testing continues to be proposed as a way of efficiently identifying and mitigating transmission in congregate settings. However, 2 SARS-CoV-2 outbreaks occurred among intercollegiate university athletic programs during the fall 2020 semester, despite mandatory directly observed daily antigen testing. METHODS: During the fall 2020 semester, athletes and staff in both programs were tested daily using Quidel's Sofia SARS Antigen Fluorescent Immunoassay, with positive antigen results requiring confirmatory testing with real-time reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction. We used genomic sequencing to investigate transmission dynamics in these 2 outbreaks. RESULTS: In the first outbreak, 32 confirmed cases occurred within a university athletics program after the index patient attended a meeting while infectious, despite a negative antigen test on the day of the meeting. Among isolates sequenced from that outbreak, 24 (92%) of 26 were closely related, suggesting sustained transmission following an initial introduction event. In the second outbreak, 12 confirmed cases occurred among athletes from 2 university programs that faced each other in an athletic competition, despite receipt of negative antigen test results on the day of the competition. Sequences from both teams were closely related and distinct from viruses circulating in the community for team 1, suggesting transmission during intercollegiate competition in the community for team 2. CONCLUSIONS: These findings suggest that antigen testing alone, even when mandated and directly observed, may not be sufficient as an intervention to prevent SARS-CoV-2 outbreaks in congregate settings, and they highlight the importance of vaccination to prevent SARS-CoV-2 outbreak in congregate settings.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Sports , Humans , Immunologic Tests , SARS-CoV-2 , Universities
5.
Clin Infect Dis ; 73(Suppl 1): S45-S53, 2021 07 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1225623

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: High-frequency, rapid-turnaround severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) testing continues to be proposed as a way of efficiently identifying and mitigating transmission in congregate settings. However, 2 SARS-CoV-2 outbreaks occurred among intercollegiate university athletic programs during the fall 2020 semester, despite mandatory directly observed daily antigen testing. METHODS: During the fall 2020 semester, athletes and staff in both programs were tested daily using Quidel's Sofia SARS Antigen Fluorescent Immunoassay, with positive antigen results requiring confirmatory testing with real-time reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction. We used genomic sequencing to investigate transmission dynamics in these 2 outbreaks. RESULTS: In the first outbreak, 32 confirmed cases occurred within a university athletics program after the index patient attended a meeting while infectious, despite a negative antigen test on the day of the meeting. Among isolates sequenced from that outbreak, 24 (92%) of 26 were closely related, suggesting sustained transmission following an initial introduction event. In the second outbreak, 12 confirmed cases occurred among athletes from 2 university programs that faced each other in an athletic competition, despite receipt of negative antigen test results on the day of the competition. Sequences from both teams were closely related and distinct from viruses circulating in the community for team 1, suggesting transmission during intercollegiate competition in the community for team 2. CONCLUSIONS: These findings suggest that antigen testing alone, even when mandated and directly observed, may not be sufficient as an intervention to prevent SARS-CoV-2 outbreaks in congregate settings, and they highlight the importance of vaccination to prevent SARS-CoV-2 outbreak in congregate settings.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Sports , Humans , Immunologic Tests , SARS-CoV-2 , Universities
6.
MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep ; 70(4): 114-117, 2021 Jan 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1112896

ABSTRACT

During September 3-November 16, 2020, daily confirmed cases of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) reported to the Wisconsin Department of Health Services (WDHS) increased at a rate of 24% per week, from a 7-day average of 674 (August 28-September 3) to 6,426 (November 10-16) (1). The growth rate during this interval was the highest to date in Wisconsin and among the highest in the United States during that time (1). To characterize potential sources of this increase, the investigation examined reported outbreaks in Wisconsin that occurred during March 4-November 16, 2020, with respect to their setting and number of associated COVID-19 cases.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Disease Outbreaks/statistics & numerical data , Public Health Surveillance , Health Facilities/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Incidence , Laboratories , Long-Term Care , Prisons/statistics & numerical data , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Universities/statistics & numerical data , Wisconsin/epidemiology
7.
J Infect Dis ; 224(8): 1362-1371, 2021 Oct 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1112094

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: To better understand severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) shedding and infectivity, we estimated SARS-CoV-2 RNA shedding duration, described participant characteristics associated with the first negative rRT-PCR test (resolution), and determined if replication-competent viruses was recoverable ≥10 days after symptom onset. METHODS: We collected serial nasopharyngeal specimens from 109 individuals with rRT-PCR-confirmed COVID-19 in Utah and Wisconsin. We calculated viral RNA shedding resolution probability using the Kaplan-Meier estimator and evaluated characteristics associated with shedding resolution using Cox proportional hazards regression. We attempted viral culture for 35 rRT-PCR-positive nasopharyngeal specimens collected ≥10 days after symptom onset. RESULTS: The likelihood of viral RNA shedding resolution at 10 days after symptom onset was approximately 3%. Time to shedding resolution was shorter among participants aged <18 years (adjusted hazards ratio [aHR], 3.01; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.6-5.6) and longer among those aged ≥50 years (aHR, 0.50; 95% CI, .3-.9) compared to participants aged 18-49 years. No replication-competent viruses were recovered. CONCLUSIONS: Although most patients were positive for SARS-CoV-2 for ≥10 days after symptom onset, our findings suggest that individuals with mild to moderate COVID-19 are unlikely to be infectious ≥10 days after symptom onset.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/transmission , RNA, Viral/isolation & purification , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Virus Shedding , Adolescent , Adult , Age Factors , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/virology , COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing , Child , Child, Preschool , Contact Tracing , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Nasopharynx/pathology , Nasopharynx/virology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Time Factors , Virus Replication , Young Adult
8.
Clin Infect Dis ; 72(4): 682-685, 2021 02 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1087707

ABSTRACT

In a household study, loss of taste and/or smell was the fourth most reported symptom (26/42 [62%]) among coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) case patients and had the highest positive predictive value (83% [95% confidence interval [CI], 55%-95%) among household contacts. Olfactory and taste dysfunctions should be considered for COVID-19 case identification and testing prioritization.


Subject(s)
Ageusia , COVID-19 , Olfaction Disorders , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Smell , Taste
9.
MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep ; 69(5152): 1642-1647, 2021 Jan 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1005171

ABSTRACT

Antigen-based tests for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), are inexpensive and can return results within 15 minutes (1). Antigen tests have received Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for use in asymptomatic and symptomatic persons within the first 5-12 days after symptom onset (2). These tests have been used at U.S. colleges and universities and other congregate settings (e.g., nursing homes and correctional and detention facilities), where serial testing of asymptomatic persons might facilitate early case identification (3-5). However, test performance data from symptomatic and asymptomatic persons are limited. This investigation evaluated performance of the Sofia SARS Antigen Fluorescent Immunoassay (FIA) (Quidel Corporation) compared with real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) for SARS-CoV-2 detection among asymptomatic and symptomatic persons at two universities in Wisconsin. During September 28-October 9, a total of 1,098 paired nasal swabs were tested using the Sofia SARS Antigen FIA and real-time RT-PCR. Virus culture was attempted on all antigen-positive or real-time RT-PCR-positive specimens. Among 871 (79%) paired swabs from asymptomatic participants, the antigen test sensitivity was 41.2%, specificity was 98.4%, and in this population the estimated positive predictive value (PPV) was 33.3%, and negative predictive value (NPV) was 98.8%. Antigen test performance was improved among 227 (21%) paired swabs from participants who reported one or more symptoms at specimen collection (sensitivity = 80.0%; specificity = 98.9%; PPV = 94.1%; NPV = 95.9%). Virus was isolated from 34 (46.6%) of 73 antigen-positive or real-time RT-PCR-positive nasal swab specimens, including two of 18 that were antigen-negative and real-time RT-PCR-positive (false-negatives). The advantages of antigen tests such as low cost and rapid turnaround might allow for rapid identification of infectious persons. However, these advantages need to be balanced against lower sensitivity and lower PPV, especially among asymptomatic persons. Confirmatory testing with an FDA-authorized nucleic acid amplification test (NAAT), such as RT-PCR, should be considered after negative antigen test results in symptomatic persons, and after positive antigen test results in asymptomatic persons (1).


Subject(s)
Antigens, Viral/analysis , COVID-19 Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Student Health Services , Adolescent , Adult , Asymptomatic Diseases , COVID-19/epidemiology , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Sensitivity and Specificity , Universities , Wisconsin/epidemiology , Young Adult
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