Ellen Wald and Shelby O’Connor awarded grant to improve SARS-CoV-2 testing in schools

Ellen Wald, MD
Ellen Wald,
Department Chair and Alfred Dorrance Daniels Professor

Congratulations to Ellen Wald, MD, department chair and professor, Infectious Diseases, along with co-principal investigator Shelby O’Connor, PhD, professor, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, and co-investigator Joseph McBride, MD, assistant professor, Infectious Diseases, who together are creating a comprehensive COVID-19 testing and surveillance strategy to keep Madison Metropolitan School district elementary students safe while attending in-person school. Their new grant, “Safe and Healthy Schools (SHS),” is funded by the Wisconsin Partnership Program’s COVID-19 Response Research and Education Grant Program, through the Partnership Education and Research Committee, in the amount of $100,000 over twelve months. Project objectives are to quickly identify and distinguish cases of COVID from non-COVID respiratory viruses that commonly occur in the school setting. The project will help identify ways to improve upon the current statewide testing program for SARS-CoV-2 that requires a high number of resources and nasal swab techniques that are difficult to perform on many elementary school children.