Temporal Dynamics of Viral Load and False negative Rate Influence the Levels of Testing Necessary to Combat COVID19 Spread

Joshua Kelley, Katherine Jarvis

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Received date: 31st August 2020

Colleges and other organizations are considering testing plans to return to operation as the COVID19 pandemic continues.  Pre-symptomatic spread and high false negative rates for testing may make it difficult to stop viral spread. Here, we develop a stochastic agent-based model of COVID19 in a university sized population, considering the dynamics of both viral load and false negative rate of tests on the ability of testing to combat viral spread.  Reported dynamics of SARS-CoV-2 can lead to an apparent false negative rate from ~17% to ~48%.  Nonuniform distributions of viral load and false negative rate lead to higher requirements for frequency and fraction of population tested in order to bring the apparent Reproduction number (Rt) below 1.  Thus, it is important to consider non-uniform dynamics of viral spread and false negative rate in order to model effective testing plans. 

Read in full at medRxiv.

This is an abstract of a preprint hosted on a preprint server, which is currently undergoing peer review at Scientific Reports. The findings have yet to be thoroughly evaluated, nor has a decision on ultimate publication been made. Therefore, the results reported should not be considered conclusive, and these findings should not be used to inform clinical practice, or public health policy, or be promoted as verified information.

Scientific Reports

Nature Research, Springer Nature