COVID-19 Testing Study

Community Based Epidemiologic Surveillance Study of the COVID-19 Pandemic – A partnership between Dr. Kevin Sykes at the University of Kansas Medical Center (KUMC) and Heart to Heart International with support from the CDC Foundation and community-based organizations.

Working in collaboration with community partners, Heart to Heart International is providing free COVID-19 tests to essential workers who may be moving around the community without knowing if they are infected. Individuals are being tested at sites selected in consultation with the community groups.

Why is this study being done?

According to the Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine in the United Kingdom, estimates of the number of asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infected individuals range from 5-80%. The lack of precision in this range creates significant concerns about how to control the spread of the outbreak. Smaller metropolitan areas like Kansas City have struggled to scale up testing and evaluate the effect of the physical distancing and mandatory stay-at-home orders.

Essential workers often do not have access to tests for the virus, especially if they do not have symptoms. This study tests these workers and asks them to answer survey questions to help researchers understand more about how workers are contracting the virus, and how and where they are moving through the community. This information will provide employers, community leaders, and policymakers with better evidence as they make decisions about re-opening businesses or activities.

Objectives of the study:

  1. Deploy mobile testing sites at essential businesses to provide SARS-CoV-2 testing for individuals with limited access to or opportunities for testing services.
  2. Test approximately 5,000 previously untested essential workers who live in predominantly marginalized communities with limited resources and access to healthcare services.
  3. Create a registry of willing participants in ongoing surveillance or future vaccine efficacy studies.

How is this study funded?

Heart to Heart International received a grant from the CDC Foundation that will help cover the cost of testing for 5,000 individuals. We need your help to fully fund this important program.

We’re actively looking to enroll additional participants in the study. We’ve been working with organizations to get people within their networks to sign up for the testing. Particularly for marginalized groups, we believe that the involvement of a trusted entity increases the likelihood of registration and follow through with the testing.The research study requires completion of a consent form, registration questionnaire, and survey. This process takes approximately 10-15 minutes to complete. The link below is active, so please do not submit unless you are registering.

If you would like to discuss scheduling an event or would like to confirm dates for an upcoming test site, or for technical questions on the testing modality, please contact Tena Tiruneh.

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