COVID-19 Genomic Epidemiology Toolkit Developer: Nicholas Lehnertz, MD, MPH, MHS

Nicholas Lehnertz, MD, MPH, MHS

Medical Specialist

Division of Infectious Disease Epidemiology, Prevention and Control
Minnesota Department of Health

Nicholas Lehnertz, MD, contributed to the toolkit’s case studies on COVID-19 outbreaks in long-term care facilities and meat processing plants in Minnesota. These case studies demonstrate the value of whole genome sequencing for understanding SARS-CoV-2 transmission patterns.

Dr. Lehnertz is a Medical Specialist in Infectious Disease Epidemiology, Prevention and Control at the Minnesota State Department of Health. His current interests are using epidemiology and genomic sequencing to understand SARS-CoV-2 transmission patterns, clinical characteristics of pre-symptomatic infection in residents of long-term care facilities, and reinfections with SARS-CoV-2. He received his medical degree from the University of Minnesota, his resident training at the University of Vermont and Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions, and his public health training at Johns Hopkins School of Public Health.

“Whole genome sequencing (WGS) is a powerful tool that can help assist epidemiologists in understanding viral transmission patterns in outbreak settings. WGS often provides clarity to an otherwise opaque and discombobulated picture, allowing for more precise mitigation strategies and more nuanced outbreak response.”