Covid-SURGE Toolkit: Using Wastewater Data to Monitor Outbreaks

Covid-SURGE Toolkit: Using Wastewater Data to Monitor Outbreaks

Jul 28, 2023

Use wastewater data to identify COVID-19 surges.

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Many public health officials struggle with interpreting wastewater data, in part because commonly reported wastewater metrics do not indicate when action is needed. Mathematica developed the Covid-SURGE (Signaling Unprecedented Rises in Groupwide Exposure) Toolkit to help U.S. public health officials interpret and use wastewater data for pandemic management. The toolkit includes:

  • A Covid-SURGE Algorithm and Calculator that public health officials can use with their wastewater data to flag community-level COVID-19 surges in real time.
  • An interactive Covid-SURGE Risk Estimator that combines wastewater data with other key public health data to create a risk score, risk trend classification, and alerts that provide officials with a more holistic view of COVID-19 exposure.

This generalizable Covid-SURGE algorithm and calculator give public health officials a timely way to assess when renewed attention and action may be needed. In addition, the logical criteria we lay forth provide a framework to develop similar algorithms (e.g., flu-SURGE) for wastewater data on other public health biomarkers.

For more information, contact Aparna Keshaviah.

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