Small number of Major League Baseball employees test positive for Covid-19 antibodies

Epoch Times

Epoch Times

"The test will detect the prevalence of IgM, an antibody produced relatively early in those who have been infected with COVID-19, and IgG, a second form that doctors said lasts long after the infection happens".

The study, which consisted of sending out 10,000 coronavirus antibody tests to employees of 26 Major League Baseball teams in mid-April, reportedly found that 0.7 percent of participating Major League Baseball employees had antibodies - a number adjusted to reflect testing accuracy - and that 70 percent of those testing positive had been asymptomatic. Bhattacharya added that numerous people tested were considered "white collar", which could help explain why the rate of infection was lower than expected, pointing to "a socioeconomic gradient where poorer populations are facing COVID infections at higher rates".

Twenty-six of MLB's 30 teams participated in the study, which sent out 10 000 test kits.

"I was expecting a little bit of a higher number", Bhattacharya said.

According to Bhattacharya, there are several reasons why this number was low. "They're not representative of every city that they're in", Bhattacharya said.

Epoch Times

"There's a socioeconomic gradient where poorer populations are facing Covid infections at higher rates", Bhattacharya said. Bhattacharya said he expected a larger positive rate.

"By using two different technologies, both PCR to diminish the active virus, as well as the antibody, the serology tests, that will give you better information and may even be able to alleviate some of the concerns with false positives", said Daniel Eichner of the Sports Medicine Research and Testing Laboratory in Salt Lake City. another of the study leaders. "If anything, it's been shown to be more robust". He added that it was unusual to hold a news conference about a study before it was peer reviewed, but he wanted to respond to what he said was a "huge amount of public interest". "I felt a responsibility not to wait". That determined rate is reportedly lower than what similar studies in California found.

The number of players involved in the study is unclear. The Arizona Diamondbacks returned the most samples, with 362, and four teams did not participate. They emphasized MLB offered assistance from the perspective of public health, not for guidance in getting baseball back on the field. He and Bhattacharya praised the league for its ability to gather such a large sample in a short window of time.

Bhattacharya said the study provided good news in the zero deaths but bad news by indicating that "the epidemic has not gotten very far".

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