Traces Of Virus Detected In Water; Rapid Spit Tests Slow In Coming
There is no evidence water can spread the virus, but researchers say knowing where to look for the virus is key in dealing with future infections. News is on testing, contact tracing and more, as well.
Traces Of Coronavirus Found In Lake Superior Water, Researchers Say
Traces of the novel coronavirus were found in water samples taken from Lake Superior beaches in Duluth, Minn., according to researchers with the University of Minnesota Medical School, Duluth campus. Since July, researchers have collected water samples from eight different beaches in Duluth in an effort to better understand how the novel virus “acts in the water and whether it can spread there,” the Star Tribune reported. (The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says there is “no evidence that SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, can spread to people through water” at oceans, lakes and other natural bodies of water, as well as pools, water playgrounds and hot tubs.) (Farber, 10/1)
In other news —
The New York Times:
Rapid Coronavirus Spit Tests Aren't Coming Soon
For months, public health experts have been eagerly watching the companies developing spit tests for the coronavirus that could be used at home, producing results in a matter of minutes. If these rapid saliva tests worked, as many news articles have pointed out, they could greatly expand the number of people getting tested. Some experts have even said they could perform as well as a vaccine in curbing the spread of the coronavirus and paving a path back to normalcy. But so far, the technology is not panning out as some have hoped. (Wu, 10/1)
What’s It Like To Be A Contact Tracer? We Spoke With 3 To Find Out.
Renee Simmons never forgets a name. And there are a lot of names. Since late June, the 56-year-old contact tracer with the Rock Island County Health Department has spent most of her time cold-calling people whose names are assigned to her from a database that documents who in Illinois, and who in her community along the Mississippi River on the state’s northwest side, is the most recent to test positive for COVID-19. (Jaffe, 10/1)
The Baltimore Sun:
Coronavirus Antibody Tests Have Had Plenty Of Problems. Hopkins Is Developing A Better, At-Home Version.
Plenty of people want to know whether they ever had COVID-19, and public officials need to know. But existing antibody tests that look for markers of the disease caused by the coronavirus have not met the challenge, with accuracy, cost and convenience problems. Scientists at the Johns Hopkins University and elsewhere, however, are working on the next generation of these tests that can be done at home. (Cohn, 10/1)
'Aerosol' Vs. 'Airborne' Vs. 'Droplets' Amid COVID-19: What You Need To Know
Conflicting messages from public health authorities have fueled a great deal of confusion over COVID-19, particularly regarding its transmission. The terms "aerosol," "airborne" and "droplet" have made the rounds in attempts to explain how the novel coronavirus may spread, but without sufficient explanations of what they mean. (Anoruo, 10/2)