The effect of COVID-19 stay-at-home order and campus closure on the
prevalence of acute respiratory infection symptoms in college campus
Evaluation of population-based COVID-19 control measures informs
strategies to quell the current pandemic and reduce the impact of those
yet to come. Effective COVID-19 control measures may simultaneously
reduce the incidence of other acute respiratory infections (ARIs) due to
shared transmission modalities. To assess the impact of stay-at-home
orders and other physical distancing measures on the prevalence of
ARI-related symptoms, we compared symptoms reported by prospective
college cohorts enrolled during two consecutive academic years.
ARI-related symptoms declined following campus closure and
implementation of stay-at-home orders, demonstrating the impact of
population-based physical distancing measures on control of a broad
range of respiratory infections.