Study: 12% of Orange County, California, Residents Had Coronavirus Antibodies by Summer

People enjoy the beach amid the novel coronavirus pandemic in Huntington Beach, California on April 25, 2020. - Orange County is the only county in the area where beaches remain open, lifeguards in Huntington Beach expect tens of thousands of people to flock the beach this weekend due to the …
Apu Gomes / AFP / Getty

A new study suggests that 12% of the residents of Orange County, California, may have developed coronavirus antibodies by summer — seven times more than official statistics have reported.

The study, funded by the Orange County Health Care Agency, found that the seroprevalence of coronavirus in the general population was roughly 12%, and that Hispanic residents were particularly hard-hit by the pandemic. The study has not yet been peer-reviewed.

The Orange County Register reported:

A carefully designed study of blood samples from Orange County residents found that 12% had coronavirus antibodies — meaning their immune systems had fought the virus at some point — an infection rate more than seven times higher than official case counts suggest.

That means at least 371,000 people in Orange County have had COVID-19, researchers found.

Rates were highest among Latino residents and low-income adults, and lowest among non-Latino White and Black residents and those earning more than $100,000 a year.

Orange County resisted some public beach closures early in the pandemic, and local officials clashed with Gov. Gavin Newsom over the issue.

Public health officials are worried about recent surges in coronavirus cases reported in other Southern California counties nearby.

“In four Southern California counties — Imperial, San Bernardino, Riverside and Los Angeles — the average numbers of new daily infections per 100,000 residents over the past week rank among the top five statewide,” the Los Angeles Times reported on Tuesday.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). His newest e-book is The Trumpian Virtues: The Lessons and Legacy of Donald Trump’s Presidency. His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.


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