Researchers started testing an entire city in northern California for the novel coronavirus and its antibodies Monday, one of the first such programs since the pandemic hit the U.S.
Bolinas, a rich beach town in Marin County, close to Silicon Valley, raised funds to test all 1,680 of its residents, in collaboration with the University of California-San Francisco (UCSF).
Dr. Aenor Sawyer, an assistant professor at UCSF and a Bovinas resident, stated the city is uniquely situated to teach the medical neighborhood about how the illness spreads as a result of it lies two miles (three km) from a freeway with no via highway.
The tests are being supplied for free. Volunteers direct the town’s citizens to drive into four testing bays set up for nasal swabs and finger pricks. The swabs are used to check for the coronavirus, whereas the finger prick is used to gather blood samples that shall be tested for antibodies that can help show who has been infected and recovered.
There have been no confirmed virus infections in Bolinas, but many people are older than 60 and at higher risk from contracting COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the virus.
Telluride, Colorado, and Fisher Island, Florida, are two other rich towns providing free diagnostic tests for all their residents.
The testing in Bolinas is the first of a two-half study in which UCSF researchers will look at the spread of the illness in both rural and concrete areas.