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Verify: It’s too soon to say for sure COVID-19 circulated in the US in December 2019

A new study seems to point out that blood donations showed COVID-19 antibodies in December of last year. A month before the first diagnosed case in the U.S.

WASHINGTON — We are approaching the one-year mark from the first diagnosed case of the coronavirus in in the United States.  It was mid-January last year.

However, new evidence shows the coronavirus might have been in the United States before that; maybe even December of last year.

Question:

What does the evidence and experts say about COVID19 being in the United States in December of 2019?

Answer:

The evidence points to a strong possibility, but experts want more testing done.

Our Sources:

 A study from the Infectious Diseases Society of America. Dr. William Moss Infectious Diseases expert from Johns Hopkins University.

What We Found:

 In November, researchers published a breakthrough study in the medical peer review journal “Clinical Infectious Diseases.”

For the study researchers looked at Red Cross blood donations from December 2019 in California.

They found 2% of those donations had COVID19 antibodies.

“If we take it on face value, what they're telling us is that there was that SARS Coronavirus to was circulating in the United States before we, you know, earlier than we suspected,” Dr. Moss said.

Dr. Moss explained in the case of looking at the blood donation samples it’s not as simple saying:

‘Yes, the COVID-19 antibodies means the virus was circulating here.’

According to Dr. Moss, the tests from the study could have created false positives or reacted with other coronaviruses. It’s too soon to say for sure COVID-19 circulated in the United States in December of last year.

“So they could use the same test and test samples collected further and further back. And I think that would provide, you know, kind of a stronger evidence,” he explained.

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