Passive surveillance assesses compliance with COVID-19 behavioural restrictions in a rural US county

Faust, C. L. , Lambert, B., Kochenour, C., Robinson, A. C. and Bharti, N. (2021) Passive surveillance assesses compliance with COVID-19 behavioural restrictions in a rural US county. Epidemiology and Infection, 149(e211), (doi: 10.1017/S0950268821002107) (PMCID:PMC848503)

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Following the emergence of SARS-CoV-2, early outbreak response relied on behavioural interventions. In the USA, local governments implemented restrictions aimed at reducing movements and contacts to limit viral transmission. In Pennsylvania, restrictions closed schools and businesses in the spring of 2020 and interventions eased later through the summer. Here we use passive monitoring of vehicular traffic volume and mobile device-derived visits to points of interest as proxies for movements and contacts in a rural Pennsylvania county. Rural areas have limited health care resources, which magnifies the importance of disease prevention. These data show the lowest levels of movement occurred during the strictest phase of restrictions, indicating high levels of compliance with behavioural intervention. We find that increases in movement correlated with increases in reported SARS-CoV-2 cases 9–18 days later. The methodology used in this study can be adapted to inform outbreak management strategies for other locations and future outbreaks that use behavioural interventions to reduce pathogen transmission.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:We acknowledge financial support from Penn State University's Huck Institutes of the Life Sciences and the Institute for Computational and Data Sciences.
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Faust, Christina
Authors: Faust, C. L., Lambert, B., Kochenour, C., Robinson, A. C., and Bharti, N.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Biodiversity, One Health & Veterinary Medicine
Journal Name:Epidemiology and Infection
Publisher:Cambridge University Press
ISSN (Online):1469-4409
Published Online:16 September 2021
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2021 The Authors
First Published:First published in Epidemiology and Infection 149:e211
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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