Olympics Virus Cases Raise Tricky Questions About Testing

Moreover, questions on transmission stay unsettled. Vaccinated folks with asymptomatic or breakthrough infections should have the ability to move the virus on to others, however it isn’t but clear how typically that occurs.

Until that science is extra definitive, or till vaccination charges rise, it’s best to err on the aspect of security and common testing, many specialists mentioned. At the Olympics, as an example, frequent testing may assist shield the broader Japanese inhabitants, which has comparatively low vaccination charges, in addition to the assist employees, who could also be older and at greater threat.

“It’s those folks I’m most worried about, really,” mentioned Dr. Lisa Brosseau, a analysis advisor at University of Minnesota’s Center for Infection Disease Research and Policy.

Not solely can they contract the virus, including pressure on the Japanese well being care system, however they will additionally develop into sources of transmission: “Everybody’s at risk, and everybody could potentially be infected,” she mentioned.

According to the Tokyo 2020 press office, all Olympics employees and volunteers have been provided the chance to be vaccinated, although officers didn’t present knowledge on what number of had obtained the pictures.

Instead of testing much less steadily, officers may rethink how they reply to constructive exams, Dr. Binney mentioned. For occasion, if somebody who’s vaccinated and asymptomatic exams constructive, she or he ought to nonetheless be remoted — however maybe shut contacts may merely be monitored, slightly than being positioned into quarantine.

“You’re trying to balance the disruptive nature of what you do when somebody vaccinated tests positive against any gains at slowing or stopping the spread of the virus,” Dr. Binney mentioned.

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