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Renata Grespan 1 Article
Prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 infection among urban cleaning and solid waste management workers during transmission of the Omicron variant in Brazil
Paulo Ricardo Martins-Filho, Joyce Thayane da Conceição dos Santos, Márcia Santos Rezende, Fernanda Oliveira de Carvalho, Érica Santos dos Reis, Waneska de Souza Barboza, Taise Ferreira Cavalcante, Cliomar Alves dos Santos, Lucindo José Quintans-Júnior, Renata Grespan, Cristiane Bani Corrêa, Tatiana Rodrigues de Moura, Dulce Marta Schimieguel, Jullyana de Souza Siqueira Quintans, Adriano Antunes de Souza Araújo
Epidemiol Health. 2023;45:e2023025.   Published online February 16, 2023
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4178/epih.e2023025
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Abstract
This study estimated the prevalence of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection in urban cleaning and solid waste management workers during the transmission of the Omicron variant in one of the poorest regions of Brazil (the state of Sergipe). Nasopharyngeal swabs were collected from 494 workers, and the presence of SARS-CoV-2 RNA was tested by quantitative reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction. Data on socio-demographic characteristics, comorbidities, vaccination status, mask use, and use of public transport to commute to the workplace were collected. The prevalence with a 95% confidence interval (CI) was calculated from the proportion of SARS-CoV-2 positive cases among the total number of individuals tested. The prevalence ratio (PR) with a 95% CI was the measure of association used to evaluate the relationship between SARS-CoV-2 infection and the exposure variables. The prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 infection was 22.5% (95% CI, 19.0 to 26.4). Individuals under the age of 40 had a higher prevalence of infection (PR, 1.53; 95% CI, 1.03 to 2.30) as well as those who did not believe in the protective effect of vaccines (PR, 1.78; 95% CI, 1.05 to 2.89). Our results indicate the need for better guidance on preventive measures against coronavirus disease 2019 among urban cleaning and solid waste management workers.
Summary
Key Message
Urban cleaning and waste management workers in Brazil faced a significant risk of SARSCoV-2 infection during the Omicron variant transmission, with higher rates observed among younger individuals and those skeptical about vaccine protection.

Epidemiol Health : Epidemiology and Health