Epidemiological characterisation of asymptomatic carriers of COVID-19 in Colombia: A cross-sectional study Academic Article


  • BMJ Open


  • Introduction Asymptomatic carriers (AC) of the new SARS-CoV-2 represent an important source of spread for COVID-19. Early diagnosis of these cases is a powerful tool to control the pandemic. Our objective was to characterise patients with AC status and identify associated sociodemographic factors. Methods Using a cross-sectional design and the national database of daily occurrence of COVID-19, we characterised both socially and demographically all ACs. Additional correspondence analysis and logistic regression model were performed to identify characteristics associated with AC state (OR, 95% CI). Results 76.162 ACs (12.1%; 95% CI 12.0% to 12.2%) were identified, mainly before epidemiological week 35. Age≤26 years (1.18; 1.09 to 1.28), male sex (1.51; 1.40 to 1.62), cases imported from Venezuela, Argentina, Brazil, Germany, Puerto Rico, Spain, USA or Mexico (12.6; 3.03 to 52.5) and autochthonous cases (22.6; 5.62 to 91.4) increased the risk of identifying ACs. We also identified groups of departments with moderate (1.23; 1.13 to 1.34) and strong (19.8; 18.6 to 21.0) association with ACs. Conclusion Sociodemographic characteristics strongly associated with AC were identified, which may explain its epidemiological relevance and usefulness to optimise mass screening strategies and prevent person-to-person transmission.

publication date

  • 2020-12-7


  • 10


  • Argentina
  • Asymptomatic Diseases
  • Brazil
  • Carrier State
  • Colombia
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Databases
  • Early Diagnosis
  • Germany
  • Logistic Models
  • Mass Screening
  • Mexico
  • Pandemics
  • Puerto Rico
  • SARS Virus
  • Spain
  • Venezuela

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 2044-6055