ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202208.0437.v1
Subject: Public Health And Healthcare, Public Health And Health Services Keywords: COVID-19; LaLiga; sports; spatial and temporal analysis; serological status
Online: 26 August 2022 (02:59:56 CEST)
Objectives: COVID-19 pandemic interrupted the Spanish professional football competition until May 2020, when it was restarted following a surveillance protocol established by LaLiga. The aims were to describe the infective and serological status of professional football players (PLY) and staff (STF) between May 5th 2020 until April 22nd 2021, to analyze the spatial-temporal distribution of the COVID-19 disease in this cohort and its comparison to the Spanish population. Methods: a prospective observational cohort study was carried out. Differences between PLY and STF were assessed by Chi-squared test and test of equality of proportions. Pearson correlation test was used to measure the presence of an association between the percentages of positivity in population and LaLiga cohort. Results: 137,420 RT-PCR and 20,376 IgG serology tests were performed in 7,112 professionals. Positive baseline serology was detected in 10.57% of PLY and 6.38% of STF. Among those who started the follow-up as not infected and before STF vaccination, 11.87% of PLY and 5.03% of STF became positive. Before summer 2020 the prevalence of infection was similar than the observed at national level. The percentage of positivity in the Spanish population was higher than in LaLiga cohort, but both series showed a similar decreasing trend.