Wastewater surveillance provides public health value through the rapid connection of genomics technologies and innovation.
Wastewater findings are already influencing COVID-19 public health decisions, potentially saving lives and supporting the Canadian economy. Genome Canada is investing in innovative wastewater surveillance that connects ‘omics technology with social media tracking of enteric illness symptoms to enable real-time tracking of outbreaks. This work is easily transferable to other illnesses and pathogens, including expanding Canada’s COVID-19 wastewater screening capacity. Progress in this area, combined with federal government-facilitated development of portable detection devices for SARS-CoV-2 in wastewater, will increase the accessibility of testing locations, public health equity and the success of community responses to outbreaks.
In partnership with Génome Québec and Ontario Genomics