Wastwater Disease Tracking: A Phototograpichic Journey From Sewer to Lab


The Covid-19 pandemic has turned sewage into gold. People who are infected with the coronavirus shed the pathogen in their stool.

Wastwater Disease , By measuring and sequencing the viral material present in sewage, scientists can determine whether cases are rising in a particular area and which variants are circulating. People excrete the virus even if they never seek testing or treatment. So wastewater surveillance has become a critical tool for keeping tabs on the virus, especially as Covid-19 testing has increasingly shifted to the home. The institutions and localities that invested in wastewater surveillance over the last two years are discovering that it can be used to track other health threats, too. The Sewer Coronavirus Alert Network has already begun tracking the monkeypox virus in wastewater. And last week, New York City officials announced that polio had been detected in the city’s sewage.

Wastwater Disease, Six months ago, NYC Health + Hospitals, a large, local health care system, began piloting its own wastewater surveillance system to track the coronavirus and the flu. Monkeypox and polio monitoring will start as soon as next week. There are a variety of approaches to wastewater surveillance. Here’s a visual guide to how the coronavirus tracking process works in one New York hospital. In the Hospital Basement In which the toilets are flushed, sewage flows through a basement pipe and two intrepid scientists come to collect it. New York City was the epicenter of the nation’s first Covid wave, and its hospitals were hit hard by several surges in the pandemic. In late 2021, Health + Hospitals decided to build a sustainable, long-term pathogen surveillance system to get ahead of future outbreaks, said Leopolda Silvera, the global health deputy at Elmhurst Hospital Center in Queens, which is part of the health care network. The wastewater surveillance initiative is now running at 10 hospitals, but it began, in February, at Elmhurst.

Source: This news is originally published by nytimes



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