Surveillance and Risks of SARS-CoV-2 in Wastewater

Profs. Aaron Packman and George Wells are co-authors on a review of wastewater surveillance and risks that was recently published in Nature Sustainability. The article, titled “Rethinking wastewater risks and monitoring in light of the COVID-19 pandemic”, focuses on the impact of SARS-CoVs in wastewater.

The COVID-19 pandemic has severely impacted public health and the worldwide economy. Converging evidence from the current pandemic, previous outbreaks and controlled experiments indicates that SARS-CoVs are present in wastewater for several days, leading to potential health risks via waterborne and aerosolized wastewater pathways. Conventional wastewater treatment provides only partial removal of SARS-CoVs, thus safe disposal or reuse will depend on the efficacy of final disinfection. This underscores the need for a risk assessment and management framework tailored to SARS-CoV-2 transmission via wastewater, including new tools for environmental surveillance, ensuring adequate disinfection as a component of overall COVID-19 pandemic containment.

To read the full article, click here.

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