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Health Services and Policy Research Institute Virtual Research Rounds

Tuesday, October 13, 2020
12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
Zoom Videoconference
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Tuesday, October 13 @ 12:00 PM via ZOOM


Dr. Patti Groome, Senior ICES Scientist and Professor, Department of Public Health Sciences
Dr. Susan Phillips, Director, Centre for Studies and Primary Care and Professor, Department of Family Medicine

"Measuring the Duration of SARS-CoV-2 Shedding Using Ontario Population-Based Data"

Early in the pandemic a SARS-CoV-2 evidence void necessitated extrapolating information about shedding of related viruses to decide on a 14-day isolation policy for those testing positive. To date, such research remains limited. Although empirical evidence now suggests that viral shedding identified by RT-PCR testing may continue after infectivity has resolved, the PCR test is the only widely used indicator of COVID-19 infection. Determining the time from first positive test to resolution of viral shedding is a useful and, perhaps, necessary step in identifying the relationship between resolution of viral shedding and of infectivity.

This study used population-based Ontario-wide ICES data to find that the median duration of viral shedding is 32 days, and is longer among men, older adults, and those living in care facilities. Only 11% had resolved by day 14. Neither socio-economic status nor having chronic diseases altered the duration of shedding.

Please contact us if you have not received an invitation, or to be added to our mailing list for future events

Shari Scanlan
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