Masks are strongly encouraged throughout the conference. 3M, Aura, N95 masks, (and surgical masks), and antigen tests will be available at registration and the welcome desks daily.
Please text (833) 676-3967 if you need a mask, test, or other support.
We are doing our best logistically to reduce crowding, assess real-time ventilation estimates, and place our indoor banquet in a room that is sized for double occupancy and has extraordinarily high ceilings.
Below are two metrics used by communities to assess the degree of risk concerning COVID-19:
Community Transmission Levels in Northampton County, PA
10.2Daily new cases per 100k
1.19Number of people infected by patient
Positive Test Rate
6.5%Weekly percentage of COVID tests that were positive
What is community transmission?
This metric measures the level of confirmed cases locally per 100,000 and assigns a risk level. “High” transmission is anything greater than 50 cases per 100,000 or a positivity rate greater than 10%. Positivity rate is the number of positive tests / the number of tests reported.
How to interpret community transmission
This depends on who you ask: some infectious disease experts feel comfortable unmasking in indoor spaces when cases are somewhere between 1 and 10 per 100,000. Along with the trend or direction of community transmission (going up or down over the last week), the positivity rate can help determine if the community transmission cases are an undercount. In the current COVID climate, positivity rates are substantially high (unsurprisingly because of the amount of testing done and not reported, as in-home tests), so community transmission can be thought of as a floor.” Unless positivity rates are low (<10%), as a guideline, community transmission (cases per 100,000) represents a minimum level of community transmission.
What is the community transmission in my home location?
Community Risk Levels in Northampton County, PA
71.1Weekly new reported cases per 100k
7.9Weekly COVID admissions per 100k
1.5%Patients with COVID of all beds
What are community risk levels?
Community Risk is a “new tool to help communities decide what prevention steps to take based on the latest data.” It is derived from the number of available hospital beds, the number of hospital beds used, and the number of new local cases. The CDC changed its primary reporting mode from Community Transmission to “Community Risk” on February 25.
We provide this metric given that it is the one communicated by CDC, but would suggest that Community Risk Levels is less useful on top of being a lagging measure. Community Risk Levels are a contested measure amongst the public health and epidemiological communities.
Given the variables and thresholds involved, Community Risk Level is more of a health system measure, reflecting the capacity of a community to manage severe cases in hospitals. For individuals, this might translate to the risk of having severe covid and not being able to get treatment.
Ventilation and C02 PPM
Carbon dioxide concentration is a practical proxy for real-time ventilation. With accurate ARANET 4 sensors, we can assess the volume of “stale air” in a room; factoring in the room dimensions, occupancy, and available ventilation, we can get a reasonably accurate air exchange per hour rate (ACH) or Clean Air Delivery Rate (CADR). This measure can help us tell if there are too many people in a room, if it is not getting enough fresh air, or if it needs supplementary purification (HEPA portable or Corsi-Rosenthal).
Learn about ventilation, CO2 ppm, and clean air for schools and buildings here.
We will monitor relative humidity (RH) in all rooms, as RH levels between 40-60% can potentially reduce the risk of transmission.