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HOPE Scientific studies

Operation Gloria 8

Study: Operation Gloria 8 – Investigation into COVID-19 infection and spread of infection.

Collaborating parties: Public Health Agency of Sweden, the Swedish Armed Forces, Region Västerbotten, Umeå University, the SciLifeLab pandemic centre and Karolinska Institutet.

Read more: https://www.umu.se/nyheter/mojlighet-till-provtagning-for-covid-19-pa-campus-umea_9514461/

Region Västerbotten and Umeå University were commissioned by the Public Health Agency of Sweden to carry out a comprehensive study of the prevalence of COVID-19 on campus. 20,000 students and employees were tested in the largest prevalence investigation into active COVID-19 infection carried out in Sweden to date. The practical work was dubbed  Operation Gloria and carried out by the Swedish Armed Forces.

Background and purpose

The primary purpose of the investigation – or so-called prevalence study – was to see what impact a return to site-based studies will have during an ongoing pandemic. Umeå University was considered especially interesting as an object of  study as Västerbotten and Umeå have been relatively spared from infection and because the Umeå University recruits nationwide with a majority of incoming students.

Procedure

Students and teachers at Umeå University registered for sampling via HOPE App, through which they received ongoing information, questionnaires and test results. Testers were offered an automated information flow through the App, helping them to complete testing step-by-step. Users were notified when it was time to perform a new activity.

Testers were offered an unlimited number of samples for testing over a three-week period. HOPE App also provided information about who testers could contact with any questions or for advice. Testers received the results of the virus test within a couple of days via HOPE App.

HOPE Corona processed and shared user information in the study in a safe and secure manner with the support of consent under the GDPR.

Setup

All students and employees at Umeå University and SLU Umeå were offered self-sampling. Participation was free and if participants turned out to be infected, they had to undergo infection tracing to prevent more people from falling ill. The study was conducted between weeks 36 and 39 in 2020. Virus tests and sample analysis were provided by the SciLifeLab pandemic centre and the Karolinska Institutet via HOPE App.

The Swedish Armed Forces was responsible for the practical work of issuing and collecting sampling material. The work was carried out within the framework of Operation Gloria – a civil-military infection control operation overseen by the Public Health Agency of Sweden and the Swedish Armed Forces. The assignment in Umeå was called Gloria 8 and is still the most comprehensive investigation of its kind conducted to date.

HOPE Platform provides Region Västerbotten with a technical assistance advantage, enabling information to be displayed in different ways in different technical environments for all parties involved. At the same time as giving all healthcare staff access to relevant information and communication (via chat, push notifications, broadcast messages, etc.), HOPE Platform gave the Public Health Agency of Sweden and researchers complete oversight and full control over anonymised information in real time. On a daily basis, researchers saw the rate at which data was collected and the result in terms of infection and infection tracking. HOPE Corona ensured that data was always used in accordance with statutory requirements, as well as in a secure, responsible and considerate manner.

In addition to using HOPE App for the provision of the automated sampling process, HOPE was used for consent management and processing of data before reporting to SMINet –  the Public Health Agency register for case reports of infectious diseases that are notifiable under the Swedish Communicable Diseases Act.