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TRACE COVID-19 Results Suggest 5 out of 1,000 infected in Eugene

Teams from Oregon State University and the University of Oregon recently teamed up to test a random sample of residents of Eugene– for COVID-19. The results are in.

During November 7 and 8, 463 Eugenians said ‘yes’ to taking a self-administered nasal swab sample from their doorstep. Of these samples, there were zero positive results for SARS-Cov-2.

Researchers at OSU – and two other universities not affiliated with the TRACE project – highlighted current data on the prevalence of COVID-19 infections in the city. They estimate a prevalence of 5 infected persons per 1,000.

“Now this may seem low – but the prevalence only indicates how relatively abundant the virus is in the target population.”


OSU’s Jeff Bethel is Co-Director of TRACE and Professor of Epidemiology. He said that these results – and the pandemic in general – really come down to a speech game. “The more people you are around, the more likely you are to meet an infected person.”

Eugene has a population of 172,000, nearly half of Lane County’s population. COVID-19 cases have increased in recent weeks with the majority identified in the Eugene / Springfield area. So far in the pandemic, there have been over 3,600 cases and 37 deaths related to the virus in Lane County.

Bethel hopes to take the TRACE project to more Oregon cities.

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