Seroprevalence of SARS-CoV-2 antibodies among public transport workers in Sweden.

Sjörs Dahlman A, Anund A

Journal of Transport & Health 27 (-) 101508 [2022-12-00; online 2022-09-28]

Public transportation is an essential societal function in crisis situations like the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Bus drivers and other public transport workers are essential workers that need to keep working despite the risk of contagion. The SARS-CoV-2 virus may pose an occupational health risk to public transport workers and especially to bus drivers as they interact with passengers in a confined area. By analyzing antibodies towards SARS-CoV-2 proteins in blood samples it is possible to measure if an individual has been infected by COVID-19. Here, we report the prevalence of antibodies among bus drivers and other public transport employees in Stockholm, Sweden and relate it to socio-demographic factors. Seroprevalence of IgG antibodies towards SARS-CoV-2 proteins was investigated in a sample of 262 non-vaccinated public transport workers (182 men and 40 women) recruited between April 26 and May 7, 2021. Most of the participants were bus drivers (n = 222). The relationship between socio-demographic factors and seroprevalence was investigated with logistic regression. The seroprevalence was 50% in the total sample of public transport workers. Among bus drivers, 51% were seropositive compared to 44% seropositive among the other public transport workers. The difference was not significant. The seroprevalence was higher than the national seroprevalence in Sweden during the same period (18.3% in non-vaccinated people aged 20-64 years). The logistic regression model using Wald forward selection showed that men had a higher risk of being seropositive (OR 2.7, 95% CI 1.3 - 5.8) and there was a higher risk with increasing number of people in the household (OR 1.3, 95% CI 1.1 - 1.6). These findings could imply an occupational risk for COVID-19 infection among public transport workers. Infection control measures are warranted during virus epidemics to assure bus drives' safety and reduce transmission in public transport.

Autoimmunity and Serology Profiling [Service]

PubMed 36188635

DOI 10.1016/j.jth.2022.101508

Crossref 10.1016/j.jth.2022.101508

pmc: PMC9515328
pii: S2214-1405(22)00180-3

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