Study finds “extremely low” levels of COVID-19 antibodies in RI blood donors
NEW YORK – The New York Blood Center (NYBC) has published a study that found a very low level of COVID-19 antibodies in Rhode Island blood donors.
The seroprevalence of 2,008 blood donors in Rhode Island were measured to determine the findings of the study.
Seroprevalence is the level of antibodies against an infectious disease in a population, according to NYBC.
The findings of that report found that only 0.6% of the 2,008 Rhode Island blood donors had COVID-19 from the time of the virus’s peak in the state. That would be between the months of April and May 2020, the study says.
“This is one of the first studies to use blood donations to evaluate seroprevalence. The results demonstrate that Rhode Island’s response to the virus was effective and could be replicated across the country to stop the spread of this pandemic,” said Larry Luchsinger, Assistant Member, Lindsley F. Kimball Research Institute of the New York Blood Center. “This research is critical as we seek to understand this virus and evaluate the risks of reopening our communities.”
The blood donations were collected at the Rhode Island Blood Center, which is a division of NYBC.
The study was conducted in partnership with the Rhode Island Department of Health and Brown University.
“While the blood donors are not fully representative of the state of Rhode Island, this number strongly correlates to Rhode Island’s population and demonstrates the low number of infected individuals in the state,” NYBC said in a statement.
The full study is publicly available online and is undergoing peer-review.