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Study shows 13.9% of people tested in New York state have coronavirus antibodies, Cuomo says

N.Y. study: 13.9% have coronavirus antibodies
N.Y. study: 13.9% have coronavirus antibodies... 13:09

New York's first survey of coronavirus antibodies shows that 13.9% of those tested in the state had coronavirus antibodies in their system, meaning they have contracted and recovered from the virus, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said Thursday. That suggests that 2.7 million people have been infected statewide.

The survey was taken from a sample size of about 3,000 people found outside their homes, shopping at essential businesses, such as grocery stores, which remain open. Results show antibodies in 12% of women and 15.9% of men, but a disproportionate rate of antibodies in black and Latino New Yorkers. Cuomo said the spread likely reflects the regional breakdown of the state.

The rate was even higher in New York City, with about 21% showing antibodies, and on Long Island, with 16.7%.

According to Cuomo, if the results are proven accurate and the overall infection rate in New York is about 14%, the death rate from coronavirus may be lower than some estimates.

The governor emphasized that the survey provided only preliminary data, in order to better understand the state's baseline infection rate.

The governor announced Wednesday that New York is launching a COVID-19 testing and tracing program, in conjunction with New Jersey and Connecticut, that will be developed by Michael Bloomberg. The former New York City mayor is donating millions of dollars to help finance the program and will design the unique undertaking.

Cuomo said the program will train "an army of tracers" to collect data on the spread of the coronavirus in the tri-state area. A contact tracing program of this scale has never before been implemented anywhere in the country, said the governor's office.

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