In an interview with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Tate said the CDC selected 420 households at random from 30 census blocks in each county. The survey is voluntary, and households approached by CDC officials do not have to participate.
But Tate encouraged those approached to do so.
“What we want to learn is how widespread this virus is in the community,” she said. “How much community transmission is occurring. Once we know who has been infected and how widespread that lets us know how we need to target prevention efforts.”
The survey started Tuesday. Only households approached by the CDC team are allowed to participate.
The survey takes about 30 minutes and includes a questionnaire about health conditions. The researchers wear CDC vests and have badges and can conduct the survey on a porch or driveway. All members of a household are asked to participate.
The presence of antibodies in the blood reveal an infection likely occurred, but Tate said too little is known about this virus to determine if those antibodies provide any protection against future infection.
Tate said she did not have a number of participants enrolled, but she said, “we’ve had good response so far, but we want to continue to encourage people to volunteer.”
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said last week that an antibody testing survey had found more than one in five New York City residents showed signs of having had the virus. If accurate, the data suggests a far broader spread than previously known as well as much lower death rates.
Tate said people should continue to abide by hygiene and social distancing guidelines to help slow the spread of the virus.