Human Waste Could Be The Next Big Weapon in Controlling COVID-19

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If you’re a student or a faculty member who spends any time on the University of California, San Diego campus, you may know a lot more about what’s in your pee and poop—and that of your colleagues—than you might care to admit.

Members of the UCSD community can download an app that tells them the COVID-19 status of the wastewater generated in the buildings where they spend the most time. In fact, it offers quite a bit of additional detail too, telling users whether any disease-causing microbes are flourishing in that sewage. If the COVID-19 virus is detected, campus regulars get a notification that they might be either infected or exposed, and they are urged to get tested.
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The system has already helped to reduce COVID-19 cases dramatically on campus, from 80-90% of wastewater samples testing positive for the virus between Thanksgiving and January, to…

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