New surveillance approach to detect outbreaks early

A method used to detect early cases of community transmission of COVID-19 in Seattle is published in the New England Journal of Medicine. Dr. Helen Chu, assistant professor of medicine at the UW School of Medicine, explains how using  "swab-and-send," where a swab kit is sent to a home and then sent back for testing, can be an effective strategy in fighting outbreaks, similar to the COVID-19 pandemic. It was a part of Chu's work with the Seattle Flu Study.

"It will allow us to catch cases early," Dr. Chu says. "It will allow us to develop a system to map where the hot spots might be coming up. It will allow us to take measures more quickly to be able to slow down transmission."

Download the full press conference with Dr. Helen Chu and Dr. Lea Starita.

UW Medicine