Twenty thousand households in England are being contacted to take part in a study to track coronavirus in the general population.
Alongside the confirmation that human vaccine trials are to begin today in the United Kingdom with volunteers on hand to tried upon. The Government announced that over 20,000 households in England are being contacted by the Office for National Statistics to participate in a pilot study to track the infection and immune rates of the coronavirus.
How would this work – The study aims to improve understanding of infection levels and how many people may have immunity to the virus.
Volunteers will provide nose and throat swabs on a regular basis to see whether they have the virus.
The findings will help to inform the government’s strategy for easing the lockdown.
Meanwhile, the government’s Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) has discussed whether the public should wear face masks, and submitted its view for ministers to consider.
Downing Street said ministers will now review the findings
“to decide on any further action that might be needed”.
They plan to carry out tests once a week for five weeks and then every month for the next 12 months and this will apply to both symptomatic and asymptomatic individuals – with participants drawn from a representative sample of the UK population by age and geography.
Blood samples (antibody tests) will also be taken from adults in 1,000 households to ascertain whether they have had the virus in the past and have developed some form of immunity. Monthly samples will continue to be taken for a year.