Los Angeles County released a new study on Monday that suggests COVID-19 coronavirus has spread far further in southern California than the official count.
The study, conducted by the University of Southern California (USC) and the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health.
"Based on results of the first round of testing, the research team estimates that approximately 4.1% of the county's adult population has antibody to the virus. Adjusting this estimate for statistical margin of error implies about 2.8% to 5.6% of the county's adult population has antibody to the virus- which translates to approximately 221,000 to 442,000 adults in the county who have had the infection. That estimate is 28 to 55 times higher than the 7,994 confirmed cases of COVID-19 reported to the county by the time of the study in early April," the county said in a press release announcing the results.
Neeraj Sood, a USC professor of public policy at USC Price School for Public Policy and senior fellow at USC Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics, was the lead investigator.
"We haven't known the true extent of COVID-19 infections in our community because we have only tested people with symptoms, and the availability of tests has been limited," Sood said in a statement. "The estimates also suggest that we might have to recalibrate disease prediction models and rethink public health strategies."
A similar study by Stanford University in Santa Clara County also suggested that coronavirus had spread further than thought in northern California.
This study suggests that the covid fatality rate in LA County, currently estimated to be around 4%, is probably mor… https://t.co/T2URd2UJsx— Soumya (@Soumya) 1587413411.0
Having antibodies doesn't necessarily mean you're immune to the virus. We don't know enough yet to say what kind of… https://t.co/uOCaWOUNzX— Soumya (@Soumya) 1587413723.0
the antibody study shows that between 221k and 441k adults have been infected with the virus in LA County "The num… https://t.co/1GjosB8i5k— Soumya (@Soumya) 1587414251.0
USC-LA County Study: Early Results of Antibody Testing Suggest Number of #COVID-19 Infections Far Exceeds Number of… https://t.co/mXKek9oehm— LA Public Health (@LA Public Health) 1587412815.0