23 Dec Strategies to Reduce COVID-19 Infections on College Campuses
MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Elena Losina, PhD
Robert W. Lovett Professor of Orthopedic Surgery
Harvard Medical School
Director, Policy and Innovation eValuations in Orthopedic Treatments (PIVOT) Center
Co-Director, Orthopedic and Arthritis Center for Outcomes Research
Department of Orthopedic Surgery
Brigham and Women’s HospitalBoston, MA, 02115
MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?
Response: Since the pandemic began, there have been over 320,000 COVID-19 cases and 80 deaths at over 1,700 colleges, highlighting the consequences of different mitigation strategies, and as colleges are closing the fall semester and preparing for the spring semester, figuring out what worked what did not, in term of COVID-19 mitigation, is critical to minimize the impact of COVID-19 on college campuses during the spring semeste.
MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings?
Response Extensive social distancing coupled with mandatory mask wearing policies could prevent 87% of COVID-19 infections on college campuses. Frequent routing screening of asymptomatic students with laboratory testing could further reduce infections, but it is costly. Low cost tests could make routing testing more economically feasible. Keeping the campus closed, delivering education only remotely, may not be the best strategy to mitigate COVID-19, as some students may still choose to live in college towns and faculty could get infected from community. Lack of specific, college administering mitigation programs may lead to preventable infections.
MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report?
Response: Extensive social distancing and mandatory mask-wearing policies would enable higher education institutions to have the greatest impact in reducing COVID-19 infections among students and faculty. Routine laboratory testing would further reduce infections but would require lower cost tests combined with markedly increased capacity to be feasible for many colleges.
MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this work?
Response: These data could help college leadership to plan mitigation strategies to reduce impact of COVID-19 among students and faculty.
Elena Losina, Valia Leifer, Lucia Millham, Christopher Panella, Emily P. Hyle, Amir M. Mohareb, Anne M. Neilan, Andrea L. Ciaranello, Pooyan Kazemian, Kenneth A. Freedberg. College Campuses and COVID-19 Mitigation: Clinical and Economic Value. Annals of Internal Medicine, 2020; DOI: 10.7326/M20-6558
The information on MedicalResearch.com is provided for educational purposes only, and is in no way intended to diagnose, cure, or treat any medical or other condition. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health and ask your doctor any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. In addition to all other limitations and disclaimers in this agreement, service provider and its third party providers disclaim any liability or loss in connection with the content provided on this website.