Increase Screening Of Asymptomatic People For COVID Control

by Paromita Datta published on -

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With the coronavirus pandemic showing signs of slowing down, there is an increased need for precaution to ensure that it does not flare up again. New research, published in the Clinical Infectious Diseases revealed a low-cost testing method that should be taken up on a recurring basis for asymptomatic people. Led by researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital, the study explored the economic and clinical impact of different testing strategies for COVID-19 incidence and mortality in Massachusetts.

A woman clinician injecting a young girl.

Regular screening can help in effective control of COVID-19. Photo Credit: Shutterstock

 

The team compared four testing methods: hospitalized, symptomatic, symptomatic+asymptomatic-once, and symptomatic+asymptomatic-monthly. Hospitalized testing referred to PCR tests of severe or critical patients who needed hospitalization. Symptomatic testing also involved PCR tests for anyone with symptoms of COVID-19. Symptomatic+asymptomatic-once would involve a symptomatic and PCR test once for the entire population. Finally comes the symptomatic+asymptomatic-monthly. This would involve monthly re-testing for the entire population.

The team analyzed the likely reproduction numbers that would necessitate policy change. They used available information on factors like disease progression and mortality, PCR sensitivity, transmission, and costs. The symptomatic+asymptomatic-monthly model was found to be most effective. With tests cost at less than $3 at 14 day interval, it was the most cost-effective. The research recommended expanding the testing to asymptomatic people to decrease infections, hospitalization, and death.

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About the Author

Paromita Datta covers the latest health and wellness trends for Organic Facts. An ex-journalist who specialized in health and entertainment news, Paromita was responsible for managing a health supplement for The New Indian Express, a leading national daily in India. She has completed her post-graduation in Business Administration from the University of Rajasthan and her diploma in journalism from YMCA, Delhi. She has completed an e-course, Introduction to Food and Health, from Stanford University, US.

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