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1.
Clin Infect Dis ; 2022 Aug 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1973120

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. RESULTS: 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). CONCLUSIONS: 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.
J Am Coll Health ; : 1-8, 2022 Jul 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1915375

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: Characterize college student COVID-19 behaviors and attitudes during the early pandemic. Participants: Students on two university campuses in Wisconsin. METHODS: Surveys administered in September and November 2020. RESULTS: Few students (3-19%) participated in most in-person activities during the semester, with eating at restaurants as the exception (72-80%) and attending work (35%) and parties (33%) also reported more frequently. The majority wore masks in public (94-99%), but comparatively fewer (42%) did so at parties. Mask-wearing at parties decreased from September to November (p < 0.05). Students attending parties, or consuming more alcohol, were less concerned and more likely to take COVID-19-associated risks. CONCLUSIONS: Students were motivated to adhere to COVID-19 prevention measures but gathered socially. Though there was frequent public masking, mask-wearing at parties declined in November and may represent pandemic fatigue. High-yield strategies for decreasing viral spread may include changing masking social norms and engaging with students about creative risk-reduction strategies.

3.
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.

4.
BMC Infect Dis ; 22(1): 314, 2022 Mar 31.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1770495

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: To improve understanding of the antibody response to SARS-CoV-2 infection, we examined seroprevalence, incidence of infection, and seroconversion among a cohort of young adults living on university campuses during the fall of 2020. METHODS: At the beginning (semester start) and end (semester end) of an 11-week period, serum collected from 107 students was tested using the qualitative Abbott Architect SARS-CoV-2 IgG and AdviseDx SARS-CoV-2 IgG II assays. Results were matched to interim weekly surveillance viral testing and symptom data. RESULTS: With the SARS-CoV-2 IgG assay, 15 (14.0%) students were seropositive at semester start; 29 (27.1%) students were seropositive at semester end; 10 (9.3%) were seropositive at both times. With the AdviseDx SARS-CoV-2 IgG II assay, 17 (16.3%) students were seropositive at semester start, 37 (35.6%) were seropositive at semester end, and 16 (15.3%) were seropositive at both times. Overall, 23 students (21.5%) had positive viral tests during the semester. Infection was identified by serial testing in a large majority of individuals who seroconverted using both assays. Those seropositive at semester end more frequently reported symptomatic infections (56.5%) than asymptomatic infections (30.4%). CONCLUSION: Differences between antibody targets were observed, with more declines in antibody index values below the threshold of positivity with the anti-nucleocapsid assay compared to the anti-spike assay. Serology testing, combined with serial viral testing, can detect seroconversions, and help understand the potential correlates of protection provided by antibodies to SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Antibodies, Viral , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , Cohort Studies , Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay , Humans , Seroconversion , Seroepidemiologic Studies , Students , Universities
5.
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
6.
Emerg Infect Dis ; 27(11): 2882-2886, 2021 Nov.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1477768

ABSTRACT

We describe characteristics associated with having coronavirus disease (COVID-19) among students residing on a university campus. Of 2,187 students, 528 (24.1%) received a COVID-19 diagnosis during fall semester 2020. Students sharing a bedroom or suite had approximately twice the odds of contracting COVID-19 as those living alone.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Universities , COVID-19 Testing , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Students , Wisconsin/epidemiology
7.
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
8.
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
9.
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
10.
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
11.
AIDS Behav ; 25(2): 354-359, 2021 Feb.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-670571

ABSTRACT

People living with HIV (PLWH) and substance use disorder (SUD) are particularly vulnerable to harmful health consequences of the global COVID-19 pandemic. The health and social consequences of the pandemic may exacerbate substance misuse and poor management of HIV among this population. This study compares substance use and HIV care before and during the pandemic using data collected weekly through an opioid relapse prevention and HIV management mobile-health intervention. We found that during the pandemic, PLWH and SUD have increased illicit substance use and contact with other substance-using individuals and decreased their confidence to stay sober and attend recovery meetings. The proportion of people missing their HIV medications also increased, and confidence to attend HIV follow-up appointments decreased. Optimal support for PLWH and SUD is critical during pandemics like COVID-19, as drug-related and HIV antiretroviral therapy (ART) non-adherence risks such as overdose, unsafe sexual behaviors, and transmission of infectious diseases may unfold.


RESUMEN: Personas con VIH y con trastornos por abuso de sustancias son más vulnerable a las consecuencias de la pandemia: COVID-19. Dentro estas poblaciones, las consecuencias sociales y de la salud, causadas por la pandemia, pueden exacerbar el mal uso de las sustancias, y la adherencia a los antiretrovirales. Este estudio compara el abuso de sustancias y el cuidado del VIH, antes y durante la pandemia, usando datos colectados semanal de otro programa que también investigo la prevención entre personas que han recaído con el uso de opioides y que tienen VIH. Nuestro análisis encuentra, que durante la pandemia, incrementaron el uso de sustancias ilícitas, y contacto con otras personas que usan sustancias, y perdieron la capacidad de mantenerse sobrios, y tambien dejaron de asistir reuniones de recuperación/apoyo. También, el porcentaje de personas con VIH no siguiendo con sus planes de tratamiento de VIH, incrementó; perdieron su motivacion en mantener sus citas médicos. Es muy crítico, durante una pandemia como COVID-19, tener recursos para personas que pertenecen a estas poblaciones, si no, casos de sobredosis, sexo sin protección y la transmisión de enfermedades infecciosas van a prevaler.


Subject(s)
Anti-HIV Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/psychology , HIV Infections/drug therapy , HIV Infections/psychology , Health Services Accessibility/statistics & numerical data , Substance-Related Disorders/complications , Substance-Related Disorders/psychology , Telemedicine , Adult , HIV Infections/epidemiology , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Substance-Related Disorders/epidemiology
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