How 4 Sleepaway Camps in Maine Prevented COVID-19 Outbreaks

August 27, 2020
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    A CDC report finds that four overnight camps in Maine successfully prevented COVID-19 spread among more than 1,000 people.

    According to the new report, the camps tested campers and staff before and after arrival. Employees at the camp also implemented a rule that everyone had to wear a face mask and social distance, reported Business Insider.

    “Testing and quarantine before staff member and camper arrival was essential to identifying SARS-CoV-2 infection and preventing introduction of virus into these congregate settings of younger adults who might be only mildly symptomatic or presymptomatic,” the authors of the report wrote.

    Employees and children were also screened daily, activities were limited, and meals were staggered.

    One camper and two staff members at three different camps tested positive for coronavirus, showing asymptomatic symptoms. When test results came back positive, they were all quickly isolated. People that were near them also had to quarantine.

    While the camps in Maine were able to mitigate transmission of the virus, a summer camp in George had an outbreak.

    More than 250 campers and staffers at the sleepaway camp tested positive.

    The camp appeared in a new report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, but is unnamed and only referred to as “Camp A.”

    The CDC worked with the Georgia Department of Public Health after a teenage counselor began feeling ill and was sent home. The following day, it was confirmed that the counselor had tested positive. The camp, which consisted of more than 600 campers and more than 120 staff members, began sending everyone home.

    Of the 597 camp attendees from Georgia, 344 were tested. Within weeks, 260 had received a positive diagnosis. While no deaths were reported, the most common symptoms were fever, headache, and dry throat.

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