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Coronavirus cases in OC may be 7 times higher than reported cases



A new antibody study suggests that the number of COVID-19 infections in Orange County may be nearly 7 times higher than previously thought.

This inspection is a joint effort between UC Irvine and OC Health Care Agency. Although it indicates that the coronavirus may be more widespread than official figures indicate (albeit less fatal), the researchers said that more Work to understand the level of protection provided by antibodies and how to best address the differences in how viruses affect different populations.

“Our research shows that although a large number of OC residents have been exposed and have developed antibodies against COVID-19, most areas of the county are still vulnerable to the virus,” Bernadette Boden-Albala, director of the university’s public health program Said, said in a statement. “For researchers, there is still a lot of work to be done.”

From July 10 to August 16, a series of coronavirus antibody tests were conducted on nearly 3,000 county residents, which are part of the body’s natural immune response to the virus.

Among the patients screened, 11.5% were found to have antibodies against COVID-19.

As of Thursday morning, 59,213 cases have been confirmed throughout the county during the pandemic.

This figure only accounts for 1.9% of the county’s nearly 3.2 million population. On the other hand, if the infection rate is 11.5%, it is equivalent to more than 367,000 cases.

So far, more than 1,400 people have died from COVID-19 in Orange County.

Health officials and researchers have previously said that the true number of people infected with the coronavirus may exceed confirmed cases because many people may not have been tested or need medical attention.

Tim Bruckner, an associate professor of public health at UCI, said in a statement: “There is general suspicion that a large percentage of people don’t know anything about it.” “Either they have symptoms and did not seek medical care, or They have no symptoms and no reason to go.”

The latest research also reflects the previously mentioned differences regarding COVID-19 infection. The researchers said that the highest prevalence of antibodies was found among Latino residents, at 17%, and 15% among low-income residents.

Boden Albara said that the higher prevalence of Hispanics “consistent with some tests and hospital data in Orange County and across the country”, and “as we look forward to the fall and flu season, these data also prove Strengthening the rationality of planning and the resources in the community may be the hardest hit.”

According to the Department of Health and Health, Hispanic and Hispanic residents account for approximately 48% of confirmed coronavirus cases in Orange County, which provides demographic information and accounts for 43% of total deaths-although they only account for that. 35% of the population of the region.

“Health equity remains the most important thing. This study not only confirms this observable trend, but also helps guide our forward strategy and policy recommendations to help ensure that all our Orange County neighbors are Get access to tests, information and education, and the resources they need to take care of themselves and their families,” Dr. Clayton Chau, county health officer and director of the Health Care Bureau, said in a statement.

Although the proportion of Orange County residents with COVID-19 antibodies is significantly higher than previously estimated, the researchers said that the findings do not mean that the county is close to herd immunity-the term refers to a sufficient population Resistant to diseases that are unlikely to spread from person to person.

Researchers say this will require at least 70% of residents to have antibodies.




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