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Development of the systematic observation of COVID-19 mitigation (SOCOM): Assessing face covering and distancing in schools.
J Clin Transl Sci. 2021; 5(1):e124.JC

Abstract

Introduction

During the COVID-19 pandemic, some K-12 schools resumed in-person classes with varying degrees of mitigation plans in the fall 2020. Physical distancing and face coverings can minimize SARS-CoV-2 spread, the virus that causes COVID-19. However, no research has focused on adherence to mitigation strategies during school days. Thus, we sought to develop a systematic observation protocol to capture COVID-19 mitigation strategy adherence in school environments: The Systematic Observation of COVID-19 Mitigation (SOCOM).

Methods

We extended previously validated and internationally used tools to develop the SOCOM training and implementation protocols to assess physical-distancing and face-covering behaviors. SOCOM was tested in diverse indoor and outdoor settings (classrooms, lunchrooms, physical education [PE], and recess) among diverse schools (elementary, secondary, and special needs).

Results

For the unique metrics of physical-distancing and face-covering behaviors, areas with less activity and a maximum of 10-15 students were more favorable for accurately capturing data. Overall proportion of agreement was high for physical distancing (90.9%), face covering (88.6%), activity type (89.2%), and physical activity level (87.9%). Agreement was lowest during active recess, PE, and observation areas with ≥20 students.

Conclusions

Millions of children throughout the USA are likely to return to school in the months ahead. SOCOM is a relatively inexpensive research tool that can be implemented by schools to determine mitigation strategy adherence and to assess protocols that allow students return to school safely and slow the spread of COVID-19.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Center for Health Equity Research, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, AZ, USA. Department of Health Sciences, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, AZ, USA.Department of Health Sciences, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, AZ, USA.Institute for Clinical and Translational Science, University of California Irvine, School of Medicine, Irvine, CA, USA.School of Exercise and Nutritional Sciences, San Diego State University, San Diego, CA, USA.Institute for Clinical and Translational Science, University of California Irvine, School of Medicine, Irvine, CA, USA. Department of Informatics, University of California, Irvine, Irvine, CA, USA.Pediatric Exercise and Genomics Research Center, Department of Pediatrics, University of California Irvine, School of Medicine, Irvine, CA, USA.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article

Language

eng

PubMed ID

34258031

Citation

Camplain, Ricky, et al. "Development of the Systematic Observation of COVID-19 Mitigation (SOCOM): Assessing Face Covering and Distancing in Schools." Journal of Clinical and Translational Science, vol. 5, no. 1, 2021, pp. e124.
Camplain R, Lopez NV, Cooper DM, et al. Development of the systematic observation of COVID-19 mitigation (SOCOM): Assessing face covering and distancing in schools. J Clin Transl Sci. 2021;5(1):e124.
Camplain, R., Lopez, N. V., Cooper, D. M., McKenzie, T. L., Zheng, K., & Radom-Aizik, S. (2021). Development of the systematic observation of COVID-19 mitigation (SOCOM): Assessing face covering and distancing in schools. Journal of Clinical and Translational Science, 5(1), e124. https://doi.org/10.1017/cts.2021.786
Camplain R, et al. Development of the Systematic Observation of COVID-19 Mitigation (SOCOM): Assessing Face Covering and Distancing in Schools. J Clin Transl Sci. 2021;5(1):e124. PubMed PMID: 34258031.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Development of the systematic observation of COVID-19 mitigation (SOCOM): Assessing face covering and distancing in schools. AU - Camplain,Ricky, AU - Lopez,Nanette V, AU - Cooper,Dan M, AU - McKenzie,Thomas L, AU - Zheng,Kai, AU - Radom-Aizik,Shlomit, Y1 - 2021/04/30/ PY - 2021/01/12/received PY - 2021/04/12/revised PY - 2021/04/22/accepted PY - 2021/7/14/entrez PY - 2021/7/15/pubmed PY - 2021/7/15/medline KW - SARS-CoV-2 KW - direct observation KW - pediatric KW - prevention KW - school SP - e124 EP - e124 JF - Journal of clinical and translational science JO - J Clin Transl Sci VL - 5 IS - 1 N2 - Introduction: During the COVID-19 pandemic, some K-12 schools resumed in-person classes with varying degrees of mitigation plans in the fall 2020. Physical distancing and face coverings can minimize SARS-CoV-2 spread, the virus that causes COVID-19. However, no research has focused on adherence to mitigation strategies during school days. Thus, we sought to develop a systematic observation protocol to capture COVID-19 mitigation strategy adherence in school environments: The Systematic Observation of COVID-19 Mitigation (SOCOM). Methods: We extended previously validated and internationally used tools to develop the SOCOM training and implementation protocols to assess physical-distancing and face-covering behaviors. SOCOM was tested in diverse indoor and outdoor settings (classrooms, lunchrooms, physical education [PE], and recess) among diverse schools (elementary, secondary, and special needs). Results: For the unique metrics of physical-distancing and face-covering behaviors, areas with less activity and a maximum of 10-15 students were more favorable for accurately capturing data. Overall proportion of agreement was high for physical distancing (90.9%), face covering (88.6%), activity type (89.2%), and physical activity level (87.9%). Agreement was lowest during active recess, PE, and observation areas with ≥20 students. Conclusions: Millions of children throughout the USA are likely to return to school in the months ahead. SOCOM is a relatively inexpensive research tool that can be implemented by schools to determine mitigation strategy adherence and to assess protocols that allow students return to school safely and slow the spread of COVID-19. SN - 2059-8661 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/34258031/Development_of_the_systematic_observation_of_COVID_19_mitigation__SOCOM_:_Assessing_face_covering_and_distancing_in_schools_ L2 - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/pmid/34258031/ DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -
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