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COVID-19 Study of Households


  • CDC needs data on persons who live in the same household.
  • Abt adapted flu pandemic studies to assess COVID-19’s epidemiological/ clinical characteristics.
  • Results are ongoing.
The Challenge

CDC needs data on how common COVID-19 is out in the community and how the virus transmits among members of the same household, even among asymptomatic individuals. CDC also is examining differences in disease severity, identifying individuals with mild and severe symptoms, including hospitalization, who live in the same household. Household studies such as C-HEaRT enable a better understanding of the true burden of the disease and other characteristics of the illness.

The Approach

C-HEaRT adapts methodologies from existing influenza pandemic preparedness studies to assess epidemiological and clinical characteristics of COVID-19. They include incidence, risk of transmission and infection, illness progression, clinical characteristics of severity, modifying behaviors, serum biomarkers, and other characteristics. Abt will confirm receipt of COVID-19 vaccine and collect post-vaccination sera from household members.

In addition to C-HEaRT, Abt is leading data management-related activities for its sister study, SARS-CoV-2 Epidemiology And Response in Children (SEARCh), led by researchers at Johns Hopkins University.

The Results

The findings will support CDC’s role during a pandemic for monitoring pandemic-related illness, describing the epidemiology of pandemic virus infection and the burden of disease, and monitoring and evaluating the use of public health interventions, antiviral treatment, and vaccine effectiveness. Results are ongoing.


Learn more:

JAMA Pediatrics: Incidence Rates, Household Infection Risk, and Clinical Characteristics of SARS-CoV-2 Infection Among Children and Adults in Utah and New York City, New York