Front-line health care workers in the Northland could play a significant role in the treatment of the COVID-19 virus.  St. Luke's has joined five other organizations around the country to take part in a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)'s RECOVER study (standing for Research on the Epidemiology of COVID-19 in Emergency Response and Healthcare Personnel.

Leading the charge locally is St. Luke's Infectious Disease Specialist Dr. Harmony Tyner.  Back in March, Dr. Tyner worked collaborated with her colleagues to put together the basis for a study on the epidemiology of COVID-19.  That idea was submitted to the CDC for grant funding.  Because the proposal was similar to another new study, Dr. Tyner and St. Luke's were asked to participate.

In information released by St. Luke's, Dr. Tyner shared:

“This project is groundbreaking and it’s exciting to be a part of.  It will help us answer many of the questions that everyone is trying to answer about the epidemiology of COVID-19. It will also allow us to learn more about what infection with COVID-19 looks like in real time. That knowledge, in turn, enables us to limit the impact of this virus locally and globally.”

To facilitate the study, St. Luke's will enroll 500 healthcare workers to take part.  According to information released by St. Luke's, "efforts will be made to fill demographic criteria based on age, gender, and occupation to ensure that individuals from all demographics are represented".  The participants will be asked to fill out a questionnaire and those people chosen to take part will complete weekly symptom assessments via text messages, swab their own noses for COVID-19 every week, and have blood drawn periodically to test for COVID-19 antibodies.

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