Government experts believe more than 20 million Americans could have contracted the coronavirus, 10 times more than official counts, indicating many people without symptoms have or have had the disease, senior administration officials said.The estimate, from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, is based on serology testing used to determine the presence of antibodies that show whether an individual has had the disease, the officials said.The officials, speaking to a small group of reporters on Wednesday night, said the estimate was based on the number of known cases, between 2.3 million and 2.4 million, multiplied by the average rate of antibodies seen from the serology tests, about an average of 10 to 1.
“If you multiply the cases by that ratio, that’s where you get that 20 million figure,” said one official.If true, the estimate would suggest the percentage of U.S. deaths from the disease is lower than thought. More than 120,000 Americans have died from the disease since the pandemic erupted earlier this year.
VitaLink Research Selected Pivotal COVID-19 Vaccine Phase 3 Clinical Trial
VitaLink Research in Greenville, South Carolina, was selected by Moderna to run its pivotal Phase III mRNA-1273 COVID-19 vaccine clinical trial. VitaLink reports that this clinical investigational site targets 1,500 (5%) of the total study participants. COVID-19 has hit South Carolina relatively hard, with 25,701 and 659 deaths.
Steve Clemmons, president of VitaLink Research, commented that the sponsor “chose our groups as well as South Carolina to be the places for this study because its already considered to be one of the hot spots in the southeast.” Clemons reported that the Phase 3 trial would commence “around mid-July” and that the whole study would consist of 30,000 participants. He reported that VitaLink planned to recruit 1,500 of the total participants via “upstate” South Carolina.
Once the Nation’s Epicenter, NY Virus Death Toll Drops to 5
New York State reached a major milestone in the fight against the coronavirus Sunday when health officials reported a single-day death toll below double digits for the first time since the pandemic’s beginning.Infections rates and daily indicators have been trending positively for the state in recent weeks, with daily death tolls hovering in the teens. According to the state, only five people died Saturday from COVID-19.
At the height of the pandemic’s grip on the tri-state, New York alone recorded almost 800 deaths for a single day. Although the state has shown considerable progress in lowering infection rates and hospitalizations, officials consider the first wave of the coronavirus far from defeated.”This is a continuation of the first wave and it was a failed effort to stop the first wave in this country,” Gov. Andrew Cuomo said on “Meet the Press” Sunday morning, adding that the state’s COVID hospitalizations have dropped below 800.