Background: During the 2020s, there has been extensive debate about the possibility of using contact tracing (CT) to contain the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, and concerns have been raised about data security and privacy. Little has been said about the effectiveness of CT. In this paper, we present a real data analysis of a CT experiment that was conducted in Italy for 8 months and involved more than 100,000 CT app users. Objective: We aimed to discuss the technical and health aspects of using a centralized approach. We also aimed to show the correlation between the acquired contact data and the number of SARS-CoV-2–positive cases. Finally, we aimed to analyze CT data to define population behaviors and show the potential applications of real CT data. Methods: We collected, analyzed, and evaluated CT data on the duration, persistence, and frequency of contacts over several months of observation. A statistical test was conducted to determine whether there was a correlation between indices of behavior that were calculated from the data and the number of new SARS-CoV-2 infections in the population (new SARS-CoV-2–positive cases). Results: We found evidence of a correlation between a weighted measure of contacts and the number of new SARS-CoV-2–positive cases (Pearson coefficient=0.86), thereby paving the road to better and more accurate data analyses and spread predictions. Conclusions: Our data have been used to determine the most relevant epidemiological parameters and can be used to develop an agent-based system for simulating the effects of restrictions and vaccinations. Further, we demonstrated our system's ability to identify the physical locations where the probability of infection is the highest. All the data we collected are available to the scientific community for further analysis.

Evaluating epidemiological risk by using open contact tracing data: Correlational study

Piotto S.
Conceptualization
;
Di Biasi L.
Data Curation
;
Marrafino F.
Writing – Original Draft Preparation
;
Concilio S.
Writing – Review & Editing
2021

Abstract

Background: During the 2020s, there has been extensive debate about the possibility of using contact tracing (CT) to contain the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, and concerns have been raised about data security and privacy. Little has been said about the effectiveness of CT. In this paper, we present a real data analysis of a CT experiment that was conducted in Italy for 8 months and involved more than 100,000 CT app users. Objective: We aimed to discuss the technical and health aspects of using a centralized approach. We also aimed to show the correlation between the acquired contact data and the number of SARS-CoV-2–positive cases. Finally, we aimed to analyze CT data to define population behaviors and show the potential applications of real CT data. Methods: We collected, analyzed, and evaluated CT data on the duration, persistence, and frequency of contacts over several months of observation. A statistical test was conducted to determine whether there was a correlation between indices of behavior that were calculated from the data and the number of new SARS-CoV-2 infections in the population (new SARS-CoV-2–positive cases). Results: We found evidence of a correlation between a weighted measure of contacts and the number of new SARS-CoV-2–positive cases (Pearson coefficient=0.86), thereby paving the road to better and more accurate data analyses and spread predictions. Conclusions: Our data have been used to determine the most relevant epidemiological parameters and can be used to develop an agent-based system for simulating the effects of restrictions and vaccinations. Further, we demonstrated our system's ability to identify the physical locations where the probability of infection is the highest. All the data we collected are available to the scientific community for further analysis.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11386/4769920
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