Ohio Joins Other Jurisdictions in Beginning Random Sample Testing
Ohio State Health Director: “I think that will help us understand a better picture of who is truly positive”
Sen. Wells: “We need this right here, right now”
Raleigh, N.C. — Public health authorities in Ohio announced that they will begin random sample testing of the population to better understand the spread of COVID-19 and the true hospitalization and fatality rates.
Ohio’s Department of Health Director, Dr. Amy Acton, told Cleveland.com they’re conducting random sample testing “to get a better sense of who’s out there, what’s going on in the general population.”
North Carolina Senate Leader Phil Berger (R-Rockingham) and Senator Andy Wells (R-Catawba) have been asking Gov. Roy Cooper and the Department of Health and Human Services to undertake a similar effort for weeks.
Sen. Wells said, “We owe it to unemployed and high-risk North Carolinians to do random sample testing to make our response to coronavirus more effective. If the data supports the measures we have taken, then presenting that data to the public will increase resolve. If the data shows we are off-target, then we can use it to be more effective.”
Sen. Wells continued, “Here’s an example: We are all concerned about hospitalization and fatality rates. Additional data will help us accurately project both. If the goal is to be ready, then this data will help us do that.”
“The Ohio Department of Health plans to randomly sample Ohio’s population for the coronavirus, which will provide much needed information of how extensive COVID-19 is in the state.
…State officials have closed schools, restaurants and bars and have ordered Ohioans to stay at home, saying the highly infectious disease is among us. Yet at this time it’s unknown how pervasive it is.
“During Saturday’s daily COVID-19 briefing, Ohio Department of Health Director Dr. Amy Acton announced a team will be made up of amateur epidemiologists, equipped with technology, to take on the effort. They’ll start with a random sample of 100 asymptomatic people.
“‘We’re trying to get a better sense of who’s out there, what’s going on in the general population,’ she said.”