A new study from Upstate University Hospital shows an alarming number of people in Central New York may have already had the coronavirus – and never knew it.
The new model came out Thursday from a team of doctors, which showed that at least 8,000 people in Onondaga, Madison and Oswego counties had COVID-19 without realizing it.
It’s a big number, and a major concern considering the ‘spread’ potential.
“We don’t know the proportion of people that get infected and have no symptoms at all, but we also know people can be mildly infected, and never go in for care,” Dr. Kathryn Anderson said.
The first confirmed case didn’t appear in Onondaga County until March 16th.
However Dr. Robert Corona, CEO of Upstate Hospital, says it makes sense.
“I’m hearing story after story of people who said, you know what, a few weeks ago I had this dry cough, I lost my sense of smell and taste. I had a fever, it lasted one or two days. I felt a little bit achy or I just had a dry cough. All these symptoms now are starting to make us think that potentially there were people that were infected with the coronavirus previously,” Corona explained. “If we had not done anything in terms of intervention, maybe 7.9% of our population would have been exposed by now, instead of 1.3 percent. So, these are just estimates from a model, but we’re having an effect.”