Antibody Study Suggests Infections Up To 80x Higher

ABC News reports:

The first large-scale community test of 3,300 people in Santa Clara County found that 2.5 to 4.2% of those tested were positive for antibodies — a number suggesting a far higher past infection rate than the official count.

Based on the initial data, researchers estimate that the range of people who may have had the virus to be between 48,000 and 81,000 in the county of 2 million — as opposed to the approximately 1,000 in the county’s official tally at the time the samples were taken.

“Our findings suggest that there is somewhere between 50- and 80-fold more infections in our county than what’s known by the number of cases than are reported by our department of public health,” Dr. Eran Bendavid, the associate professor of medicine at Stanford University who led the study, said.

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The New York Post reports:

New York State on Monday will begin conducting antibody tests to help determine how many New Yorkers were infected by the disease, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced Sunday.

A sample of 3,000 state residents will start receiving tests from the state Department of Health to detect for the presence of antibodies produced by people infected with COVID-19, Cuomo said.

The governor’s office noted that Germany — with a population of 83 million to New York’s 19.5 million — used the same sample size for its antibody testing survey. “This will be the first true snapshot of exactly how many people were infected by COVID-19,” the governor said in a statement.