UMMS Affiliation

Department of Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases and Immunology

Publication Date

2021-11-16

Document Type

Article

Disciplines

Analytical, Diagnostic and Therapeutic Techniques and Equipment | Community Health and Preventive Medicine | Education | Infectious Disease | Pediatrics | Virus Diseases

Abstract

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) transmission in K-12 schools was rare during in 2020-2021; few studies included Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)-recommended screening of asymptomatic individuals. We conduct a prospective observational study of SARS-CoV-2 screening in a mid-sized suburban public school district to evaluate the incidence of asymptomatic coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), document frequency of in-school transmission, and characterize barriers and facilitators to asymptomatic screening in schools. Staff and students undergo weekly pooled testing using home-collected saliva samples. Identification of > 1 case in a school prompts investigation for in-school transmission and enhancement of safety strategies. With layered mitigation measures, in-school transmission even before student or staff vaccination is rare. Screening identifies a single cluster with in-school staff-to-staff transmission, informing decisions about in-person learning. The proportion of survey respondents self-reporting comfort with in-person learning before versus after implementation of screening increases. Costs exceed $260,000 for assays alone; staff and volunteers spend 135-145 h per week implementing screening.

Keywords

COVID-19, K-12 schools, SARS-CoV-2, asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 screening, in-school SARS-CoV-2 transmission, mitigation, prevention

Rights and Permissions

Copyright 2021 The Authors. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).

DOI of Published Version

10.1016/j.xcrm.2021.100452

Source

Doron S, Ingalls RR, Beauchamp A, Boehm JS, Boucher HW, Chow LH, Corridan L, Goehringer K, Golenbock D, Larsen L, Lussier D, Testa M, Ciaranello A. Weekly SARS-CoV-2 screening of asymptomatic kindergarten to grade 12 students and staff helps inform strategies for safer in-person learning. Cell Rep Med. 2021 Nov 16;2(11):100452. doi: 10.1016/j.xcrm.2021.100452. Epub 2021 Oct 27. PMID: 34723225; PMCID: PMC8549440. Link to article on publisher's site

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Cell reports. Medicine

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

PubMed ID

34723225

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

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