Lee County to begin testing antibodies to prepare for a possible second wave

Reporter: Nicole Lauren
Published: Updated:
A scientist presents an antibody test for coronavirus in a laboratory of the Leibniz Institute of Photonic Technology (Leibniz IPHT) at the InfectoGnostics research campus in Jena, Germany on April 3. (Credit: Jens Meyer/Associated Press)

Lee County will begin testing antibodies to stay prepared for a possible second wave of coronavirus.

The county is teaming up with Florida Gulf Coast University researchers for a new study and they need your help.

We asked viewers on our Facebook page if they would be willing to get tested for antibodies and 75 percent said yes.

The testing will be done by random sampling and the university will analyze 4,000 tests.

A number of researches say it is the minimum sample size to show what the infection rate looks like in Lee County.

But researchers do say not just anyone can take part in this study.

“No not just anyone…You need to be asymptomatic and we need to make sure they fall within a wide diversity so that we can get a representative sample of demographics within Lee County,” said Krista Casazza, who works at the Marieb College of Health & Human Services.

They will include people of different ages, race, and health histories to mirror the demographic the county currently has.

Commissioners hope by doing this testing we can see how many people have been exposed to the virus and also find out more about the mortality rate.

Commissioner Hamman says these results could potentially prep the county for a second wave.

“So, if we know how many total cases we’ve had and what percentage of those people that have been hospitalized and what percentage of those people have unfortunately passed away…That will help us make decisions about what hospital resources we may need and what other resources we may need to respond to any kind of second wave,” said Lee County Commissioner Hamman.

Once they get the go-ahead to begin researchers think it will take about four months to complete the study.

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