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Effective control of SARS-CoV-2 transmission between healthcare workers during a period of diminished community prevalence of COVID-19
  • Nick K Jones
Nick K Jones
University of Cambridge
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We previously demonstrated that 31/1,032 (3%) asymptomatic healthcare workers (HCW) from a large teaching hospital in Cambridge UK tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 in April 2020.1 26/169 (15%) HCWs with symptoms of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) also tested positive. Here, we report on our ongoing studies, and provide a temporal analysis of SARS-CoV-2 infection rates during the ongoing UK ‘lockdown’. Corresponding with a decline in patient admissions with COVID-19, the proportion of both asymptomatic and symptomatic HCWs testing positive rapidly declined to near-zero between 25th April and 24th May 2020. These data demonstrate how infection prevention and control measures including staff testing may help prevent hospitals from becoming independent ‘hubs’ of SARS-CoV-2 transmission, and illustrate how, with appropriate precautions, organisations in other sectors may be able to resume on-site work safely.

Peer review status:Published

19 Jun 2020Published in eLife volume 9. 10.7554/eLife.59391