FGCU needs asymptomatic volunteers for COVID-19 study

Reporter: Veronica Marshall
Published: Updated:
COVID-19 test

Florida Gulf Coast University is going to use the blood of volunteers to help find a way to stop the spread of COVID-19.

The university is looking for thousands of volunteers who have not shown any coronavirus symptoms and have never tested positive for COVID-19.

The blood could help determine the spread of the virus and help shape future health guidelines.

Sinead Garnica is an undergraduate senior, and a health science major at FGCU. Her passion for medicine puts her on the front lines. “I actually perform the rapid covid tests where you get the results in 15 minutes.”

Despite that, Garnica doesn’t think she’s ever been exposed to the virus and has never experienced symptoms.

But still, she says, “I’m curious to see if I ever had the coronavirus.” A question many wonder about after hearing of asymptomatic cases.

That’s why she signed up for the university’s new COVID-19 antibody study.

FGCU’s Associate Dean for Research with the Marieb College of Health & Human Services, Krista Casazza, leads the study. “This is to improve health literacy, to improve health understanding, and to really help guide future directions and policy in terms of public health.”

She needs 4,000 asymptomatic Lee County residents to sign up for the free antibody tests.

Casazza said, “Come in, have your blood drawn, and we’ll let you know the positive or negative status within 48 hours of taking the test.”

Testing begins in late November and continues through the spring. Sites will also be scattered throughout the county.

The research aims to determine the level of asymptomatic spread and the infection rate in Lee County.

To sign up for the study click here.

You can also sign up by emailing Krista Casazza at: kcasazza@fgcu.edu or calling (239)590-7620.

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