The new coronavirus may have infected more than 320,000 adults who reside across the Los Angeles County. The number appears in a new study, which notes that the number of cases is considerably higher than what test results might suggest while the death rate is lower, CTVNews reported.
The study was conducted over two days as a joint project between county health authorities and the University of Southern California. It appears that 4.1% of the 8 million adults who live in the country have antibodies that are effective against the virus.
Some experts have criticized the methodology used for the study. However, it does reinforce previous reports, which inferred that the number of cases has been considerably higher than the ones reported via testing.
Coronavirus affects Los Angeles
Many people that may have been infected did not experience symptoms or may have faced mild symptoms that did not justify the need to take a test. This also means that the number of silent carriers may be much higher than it was thought.
More than 1,200 Californians have already died due to COVID-19, and public health officials have encouraged the population to maintain strict social distancing practices and assume that most people may carry the virus.
A similar study was conducted initially in Santa Clara, attracting negative feedback because the researchers employed social media as a tool for collecting volunteers and that the test seemed to offer unreliable results.
One of the scientists who criticized the new study argues that the validity of the test is questionable at best, and they may overestimate the number of infected patients. Some people could be more tempted to break social distancing norms if they believe that the symptoms aren’t as severe as they may seem. More than 33,000 coronavirus cases have been reported officially in California, along with 1,225 deaths.