China Tests Thousands to Calculate True Spread of Coronavirus

  • Serological surveys can show who has immunity in a population
  • Knowing the true scale of outbreak key to re-opening economies

Bloomberg News
Date: April 18, 2020

We're tracking the latest on the coronavirus outbreak and the global response. Sign up here for our daily newsletter on what you need to know.

When Tiger Ye caught the coronavirus in January, his mother and grandmother nursed him back to health. Later that month, both women developed fevers, but with Wuhan’s hospitals overflowing they chose instead to bear it out at home.

Months later, with China’s epidemic appearing under control, the pair took a blood test that confirmed they had in fact contracted and fought off the virus. But they were never counted in the country’s official tally of more than 82,000 infected and nearly 5,000 dead.

“They are lucky to have recovered all by themselves,” said Ye.

Now, amid accusations that China has under-reported its virus data, the nation is embarking upon a program that could capture the true scale of its outbreak. If undertaken globally, it could find millions more infections than the 2.1 million currently detected.    [FULL  STORY]