Article (Scientific journals)
SARS-CoV-2 Transmission in Belgian French-Speaking Primary Schools: An Epidemiological Pilot Study
Frère, Julie; Chatzis, Olga; Cremer, Kelly et al.
2022In Viruses, 14 (10), p. 2199
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Keywords :
Virology; Infectious diseases; COVID-19; Schools
Abstract :
[en] Schools have been a point of attention during the pandemic, and their closure one of the mitigating measures taken. A better understanding of the dynamics of the transmission of SARS-CoV-2 in elementary education is essential to advise decisionmakers. We conducted an uncontrolled non-interventional prospective study in Belgian French-speaking schools to describe the role of attending asymptomatic children and school staff in the spread of COVID-19 and to estimate the transmission to others. Each participant from selected schools was tested for SARS-CoV-2 using a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) analysis on saliva sample, on a weekly basis, during six consecutive visits. In accordance with recommendations in force at the time, symptomatic individuals were excluded from school, but per the study protocol, being that participants were blinded to PCR results, asymptomatic participants were maintained at school. Among 11 selected schools, 932 pupils and 242 school staff were included between January and May 2021. Overall, 6449 saliva samples were collected, of which 44 came back positive. Most positive samples came from isolated cases. We observed that asymptomatic positive children remaining at school did not lead to increasing numbers of cases or clusters. However, we conducted our study during a period of low prevalence in Belgium. It would be interesting to conduct the same analysis during a high prevalence period.
Disciplines :
Immunology & infectious disease
Pediatrics
Author, co-author :
Frère, Julie ;  Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Liège - CHU > > Service de pédiatrie
Chatzis, Olga;  UCL Saint-Luc - Cliniques Universitaires Saint-Luc [BE] > Pediatric > Pediatric Infectious Diseases
Cremer, Kelly ;  UCL - Catholic University of Louvain [BE] > Institut de Recherche expérimentale et clinique > Epidemiology & Biostatistics
Merckx, Joanna ;  McGill University [CA] > Biostatistics and Occupational Health > Epidemiology
De Keukeleire, Mathilde ;  UCL - Catholic University of Louvain [BE] > Institut de recherche expérimentale et clinique > Epidemiology and Biostatistics
Renard, Florence;  Office de la Naissance et de l'Enfance, Bruxelles
Ribesse, Nathalie;  Office de la Naissance et de l'Enfance, Bruxelles
Minner, Frédéric  ;  Université de Liège - ULiège > GIGA > GIGA I3 - Cellular and Molecular Immunology
Ruelle, Jean;  UCL Louvain / EPFL Innovation Park Lausanne > Pôle de Microbiologie médicale / SmartGene Services
Kabamba, Benoit ;  UCL - Université Catholique de Louvain [BE] > Institut de Recherche expérimentale et clinique / Pôle de Microbiologie médicale > Epidemiology and Biostatistics
Rodriguez-Villalobos, Hector;  UCL Louvain / Cliniques Universitaires Saint-Luc > Institut de recherche expérimentale et clinique / Microbiologie > Epidemiology and Biostatistics
Bearzatto, Bertrand ;  UCLouvain > Center for Applied Molecular Technologies (CTMA) > Institut de recherche expérimentale et clinique
Delforge, Marie-Luce;  ULB - Université Libre de Bruxelles [BE] > Institut de Biologie clinique
Henin, Coralie ;  ULB - Université Libre de Bruxelles [BE] > Federal Testing Platform for Covid-19
Bureau, Fabrice ;  Université de Liège - ULiège > GIGA > GIGA Inflammation, Infection & Immunity
Gillet, Laurent  ;  Université de Liège - ULiège > Département des maladies infectieuses et parasitaires (DMI) > Vaccinologie vétérinaire
Robert, Annie;  UCL - Catholic University of Louvain [BE] > Institut de recherche expérimentale et clinique > Epidemiology and Biostatistics
Van der Linden, Dimitri;  UCL Saint-Luc - Cliniques Universitaires Saint-Luc [BE] / UCLouvain > Pediatric / Institut de recherche expérimentale et clinique > Pediatric infectious diseases / Epidemiology and Biostatistics
More authors (8 more) Less
Language :
English
Title :
SARS-CoV-2 Transmission in Belgian French-Speaking Primary Schools: An Epidemiological Pilot Study
Publication date :
06 October 2022
Journal title :
Viruses
eISSN :
1999-4915
Publisher :
MDPI AG
Volume :
14
Issue :
10
Pages :
2199
Peer reviewed :
Peer Reviewed verified by ORBi
Funders :
French Community of Belgium
Available on ORBi :
since 20 October 2022

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