· An observation-based modeling study conducted at Columbia University analyzed reproductive numbers of COVID-19 in the United States and found a significant and rapid drop following social distancing and other control measures. Based on changes expected from such control measures in counterfactual models, a substantial number of cases and deaths could have been avoided if control measures were implemented 1 to 2 weeks earlier.
· An optimization model by mathematicians and data scientists using daily travel surveys, census data, and USPS building locations across various states estimated that >94% of Americans would travel to a nearby USPS facility (<7miles for 90% of travelers) for COVID-19 testing, suggesting that while high cost and additional precautions to protect USPS employees need to be considered, the USPS network has potential to provide greater ease of access to COVID-19 testing for a majority of Americans.
R&D: Diagnosis & Treatments
· A systematic review of 22 reports of rapid COVID-19 tests (n=3,198 total samples with 1,755 RT-PCR confirmed positive SARS-CoV-2 samples) published before May 25, 2020 revealed that antigen tests have variable sensitivity (average = 56.2%), while specificity was 99.5%; rapid molecular assays had a sensitivity of 95.2% and a specificity 98.9%; and calculated pooled results for individual tests revealed that Xpert Xpress assay had a summary sensitivity of 99.4% and specificity of 96.8%, while ID NOW assay had a summary sensitivity of 76.8% and a specificity of 99.6%.