Three Out of Every 1,000 Corvallisites Might Have COVID

In the fifth and latest round of door-to-door sampling using TRACE-COVID-19, field workers from Oregon State University recorded data that suggests that three people per 1,000 have the coronavirus in the Corvallis community. 

Benton County reported 19 new cases of COVID on Nov. 20, bringing the case total to 632.

The average number of new cases each day over the past two weeks is 7.29, an increase from 4.86 in the two weeks before that.

According to The Daily Barometer, 230 cases of COVID have been reported by Benton County that are connected to students, faculty, and staff on the Oregon State University Corvallis campus. Through TRACE OSU, which specifically tests the OSU community, stretching to OSU-Cascades and the Hatfield Marine Science Center campuses as well as the Corvallis one, 8,101 tests have been administered.

Students, faculty, and staff on the Corvallis campus have returned a cumulative average of 0.54 percent for students and 0.19 percent for faculty in positive COVID results via TRACE in the 14 days before Nov. 16.”

Follow up with this change to the original intro paragraph:

“This information follows the fifth and latest round of door-to-door sampling using TRACE-COVID-19. Field workers from Oregon State University recorded data that suggests that three people per 1,000 have coronavirus in the Corvallis community.”

End the article, before the line that says “For further information on TRACE…”, with:

“As reported by The Register-Guard on Nov. 21, five people per 1,000 in Eugene had COVID according to early November sampling.”

The estimated prevalence is higher than it was in April, May, and June, but Ben Dalzier, assistant professor at OSU’s College of Science and TRACE project leader, said that not much has changed from a statistical standpoint.  

In a statement to OSU Newsroom, Dalzier said the estimate is based on the number of people who tested positive on Sept. 26 and 27 – the days sampling was conducted. Dalzier said the estimate was also based on the test sensitivity and other sampling factors such as the location of those who tested positive and the number of people tested.  

Tyler Radniecki, a researcher in OSU’s College of Engineering and a principal investigator in the TRACE project, said Oregon State’s findings in wastewater analysis on the same dates corroborate the findings. 

Radniecki said the genetic material shed by those infected is present in Corvallis sewage at “low to moderately low” levels. In recent sampling, four out of six neighborhoods had the genetic markers in their wastewater. This means that the virus is not isolated to only one area, Radniecki said.  

TRACE co-leader and associate professor in the College of Public Health and Human Sciences, Jeff Bethel told OSU Newsroom, “Continued caution and adherence to public health guidelines such as social distancing, frequent hand-washing, and wearing face coverings are warranted even with this low prevalence.” 

The latest TRACE effort in canvasing received samples from 580 members of the community at 354 homes and almost 71 percent of households visited agreed to participate.  

Participants administer the tests themselves and fill out a consent form as well as answering a few health questions. They leave the completed tests outside their door where a field worker picks them up and explains what the project has found, health guidelines, and when and how participants will receive results. 

Five OSU colleges collaborate on TRACE – Science, Agricultural Sciences, the Carlson College of Veterinary Medicine, Engineering, and Public Health and Human Sciences – as well as the Center for Genome Research and Biocomputing.  

TRACE also works with the Benton County Health Department in Corvallis and other county departments throughout the state. Diagnostic testing is available through a partnership between Oregon Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory at OSU and Willamette Valley Toxicology.  

For further information on TRACE, visit the website 

By: Hannah Ramsey