Virus Outbreak: Taiwanese team makes infection discovery

KEY FINDING: People are most at risk of contracting COVID-19 if they are exposed to someone a few days before or a week after they begin to display symptoms

Taipei Times
Date: May 03, 2020
By: Staff writer, with CNA

Students wear masks and have their body temperatures taken yesterday before entering the Taipei venue where they will take the Technological and Vocational Education Entrace Examination.
Photo: Chien Jung-fong, Taipei Times

The transmission of COVID-19 has been found to be highest within a week of the onset of symptoms, according to a medical study authored by a Taiwanese research team that was published by the American Medical Association on Friday.

The research paper “Contact Tracing Assessment of COVID-19 Transmission Dynamics in Taiwan and Risk at Different Exposure Periods Before and After Symptom Onset” was authored by six researchers for the Taiwan COVID-19 Outbreak Investigation Team and published in the monthly peer-reviewed medical journal JAMA Internal Medicine.

The paper, which collected data from Jan. 15 to March 18, with a final follow-up on April 2, followed Taiwan’s first 100 confirmed patients and 2,761 of their close contacts to determine transmissibility of the coronavirus before and immediately after the onset of symptoms.The findings indicated that the infection rate was higher among contacts whose exposure to index cases started within five days of the onset of symptoms than those who were exposed later.    [FULL  STORY]

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