New STSM on “the Assessment of COVID-19 Transmission through Work”

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COVID-19 cases worldwide
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This is a specific Short-Term Scientific Mission for early-stage 2-3 researchers


5 March 2021

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the workplace has been indicated as an important place of possible infection, as it is one of the main activities for a large proportion of the population. Therefore, it is of interest to analyse the transmission and incidence of COVID-19  in the working population by sectors and job. Hence, better knowledge of occupational risks can provide important information for more targeted and fine-grained restrictions on specific activities in certain sectors to prevent the further spread of the virus or, better still, for targeted preventive measures. A quick literature search and inquiry with European colleagues reveals that there are few studies on the role of work in the spread of the virus.

Nevertheless, a thorough study of seroprevalence in the work population is urgently needed not only to assess the spread of the virus through work but also to identify high-risk jobs. The importance of this has been demonstrated by the various coronavirus outbreaks not only in hospitals, residential care centres, but also in meat processing plants in Germany, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Information about the occupation in COVID-19 is also indispensable for making informed decisions about exit measures. In addition, this information is also required for compensation, such as the recognition of occupational diseases.

During this STSM you will work with an experienced team of international researchers and conduct an in-depth systematic literature review. You will learn to build and run a search string. Next, you will extract the data from the studies and assess the quality of the studies, including the risk of bias. Finally, you will integrate the results and if the data allows, perform a meta-analysis. In addition, we aim to collect information from ongoing studies/analyses that underway, but not yet published, in various countries in Europe

We are looking for 2-3 young researchers who want to perform an international STSM on this topic within the OMEGA-NET network. Experience or interest is highly recommend in: systematic literature reviews, meta-analyses, epidemiology. We are specifically reaching out to early-stage researchers from COST Inclusiveness Target Countries.

An enthousiast international team: Prof Dr Lode Godderis (KU Leuven-IDEWE, Belgium), Damien McElvenny (UManchester-IOM, UK), Ingrid Sivesind Mehlum (STAMI, Norway), Kurt Straif (ISGlobal, Spain), Neil Pearce (LSHTM, UK), Martie Van Tongeren (UManchester, UK); is expecting your application by March 15, 2021. For more information, you can contact any of the team members (see above).