Currently submitted to: JMIR Research Protocols
Date Submitted: Nov 17, 2020
Open Peer Review Period: Nov 3, 2020 - Dec 29, 2020
(currently open for review)
SARS-CoV-2 Infection in Healthcare Personnel and Their Household Contacts at a Tertiary Academic Medical Center: Protocol for a Longitudinal Cohort Study
Healthcare personnel are at high risk for exposure to the SARS-CoV-2 virus. While personal protective equipment may mitigate this risk, prospective data collection on its use and other risk factors for seroconversion in this population is needed.
The primary objectives of this study are to (1) determine the incidence of and risk factors for SARS-CoV-2 infection among healthcare personnel at a tertiary medical center and (2) actively monitor personal protective equipment use, interactions between study participants via electronic sensors, secondary cases in households, and participant mental health and well-being.
To achieve these objectives, we designed a prospective, observational study of SARS-CoV-2 infection among healthcare personnel and their household contacts at an academic tertiary care medical center. Enrolled healthcare personnel completed frequent surveys on symptoms and work activities and provided serum and nasal samples for SARS-CoV-2 testing every two weeks. Additionally, interactions between participants and their movement within the clinical environment were captured with a smartphone app and Bluetooth sensors. Finally, a subset of participants' households was randomly selected every two weeks for further investigation, and enrolled households provided serum and nasal samples via at-home collection kits.
As of September 30, 2020, 164 healthcare personnel and 33 household participants have been enrolled. Recruitment and follow-up are ongoing and expected to continue until March 2021.
Much remains to be learned regarding risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection among healthcare personnel and their household contacts. Through use of a multi-faceted study design enrolling a well-characterized cohort, we will collect critical information regarding SARS-CoV-2 transmission in the healthcare setting and its linkage to the community.
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