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Opinion

Letters to the Editor: Finally, the coronavirus screening we need — blood antibody testing

Antibody testing
Healthcare workers tend to a driver being tested for the presence of coronavirus antibodies at a site in Westminster on April 8.
(Los Angeles Times)

To the editor: Thank you for a front-page article on the screening we most need — serologic testing of a well chosen sample of a population exposed to the coronavirus. This is the kind of testing that can actually help inform plans going forward.

The sniping over who is getting access to tests for the presence of virus does nothing but add to the anger, fear and misunderstanding present in this pandemic. Those test results do not change the method of treatment, which is based on symptoms and not specific to the coronavirus, and they do not inform decisions regarding balancing saving lives and preventing economic devastation.

Serologic testing of a well-controlled sample of an exposed population is truly valuable. Viral testing of fearful random individuals doesn’t provide any truly actionable information.

Clare Feigl, MD, Coronado

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To the editor: Our world will change as it did after 9/11. Following that Earth-shaking event, massive security measures were adopted that will continue for the rest of our lives.

The same will have to be true for our world following the great 2020 virus.

I can see a time when our COVID-19 status will be part of our identity. Before we can return to work, before we can rejoin our fellow human beings in worship or at a sporting event, we’ll need test results to see who is sick and who is immune.

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The only way we can get the millions and millions of tests is for the federal government to order them to be made. There will probably be millions who will be surprised to find they had COVID-19.

Perhaps a stamp on our passport will spare us the drudgery of having to take the test over and over.

Tom Smith, Glendale


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