Study Detail


Understanding SARS-CoV-2 infection, immunity and its duration in care home staff and residents in the UK (VIVALDI)

Status: Open

Type: Observational

Funder: Department of Health and Social Care

Sponsor: University College London

CI: Dr Laura Shallcross

IRAS-Number: 284545

CPMS-ID: 45953

Approval Date: 02 June 2020


The aim of this study is to estimate how many care home staff and residents have already been infected with COVID-19 infection using data from over 100 care homes, and to investigate which features of the residents and the care homes made past infection more likely. Elderly people, and those in care homes in particular, are at significant risk of catching COVID-19, and being admitted to hospital or dying from infection. This is likely to be caused by frequent close contact between residents and staff, and other factors related to the care home setting which are not well understood. In England, we do not know how many care staff and residents are infected with COVID-19 now, or have been infected in the past and whether people who have been infected once are protected from future infections. We also do not know the most effective way to prevent infection from spreading in care homes. This study will look at these questions in staff and residents of Four Seasons care homes; a nationwide group of over 100 care homes. We will seek informed consent to participate from all residents and staff and will ask relatives to consent on behalf of residents who lack capacity. We will collect nose/throat swabs to test who is infected right now, and blood tests to find out who has been infected in the past. These tests will be repeated in a subset of all participants over the next 6-12 months to understand how these results change over time. We will also find out what measures care homes are taking to prevent infection spreading, and what works best. This is the largest study in care homes in England and will help plan the national response to COVID-19.


The aim of this study is to estimate the proportion of care home staff and residents who have been infected with SARS-CoV-2, and investigate how this varies by care home characteristics and resident characteristics. This study is one of the largest undertaken in care homes, and will inform planning and the national public health response to COVID-19.

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