COVID-19 antibody test kit mailed to residents at random. (Aaron Hinks photo)

COVID-19 antibody test kit mailed to residents at random. (Aaron Hinks photo)

Antibody test kits being sent to British Columbians to measure impact of COVID-19

Stats Canada has started mailing out COVID-19 Antibody and Health Surveys to residents

Stats Canada is out for blood.

The national statistics agency has begun mailing out COVID-19 Antibody and Health Surveys, which include a request for a blood sample, to residents across the country, including B.C.

White Rock resident Evan Monk is among those who’ve received one, and shared with Peace Arch News the survey and antibody kit that arrived last week in the mail.

While he has not yet completed the survey, he said he plans to do so as he considers it his civic duty.

“Weird, I don’t remember ordering anything online,” Monk said of his initial reaction to receiving the survey in the mail.

Participants were selected at random. The purpose of the test is to estimate how many Canadians have tested positive for antibodies even if they have never shown symptoms of COVID-19. The test also serves as a way to better understand the social distancing behaviours of Canadians as well as their general health during the pandemic.

SEE ALSO: Want to know if you’ve had COVID-19? LifeLabs is offering an antibody test

“AS COVID-19 continues to disrupt daily life, we must manage its impacts and take steps to ensure Canadians can access future treatments and vaccines. To do this, it is important that we learn as much as possible about the virus, how it affects overall health, how it spreads, and whether we are developing antibodies against it,” Statistics Canada stated in literature that arrived with the kit.

The survey comes in two parts. The first part is an online questionnaire and the second is an at-home finger-prick blood test, which the participant then mails to a lab, where it will be examined for the presence of antibodies.

The test asks participants to mail their blood sample to the Public Health Agency of Canada’s National Microbiology Laboratory in Manitoba.

After the blood is processed, participants are to be informed of the result.

Tuesday, Statistics Canada media relations officer Anna Maiorino told PAN via email that, so far, 48,000 Canadians have been randomly selected to participate in the survey.

She said 22,000 packages were sent out Jan. 4, with an equal number going out at the end of the month. In B.C., 3,786 people were selected for the survey.

The survey is done in partnership with the Canadian Immunity Task Force and the Public Health Agency of Canada.

”Participants are asked to complete the electronic questionnaire for which they receive a link in their letter. They are also asked to complete the dried blood spot test. Answers to the electronic questionnaire will be useful even if a participant does not give blood. However, the questionnaire answers alone will not help us in answering the main purpose of the survey, which is to determine the prevalence of Canadians that have antibodies to COVID-19. A blood sample is necessary to determine that,” Maiorino wrote.



aaron.hinks@peacearchnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

CanadaCoronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Kootenay-Columbia MP Rob Morrison speaks during Question Period in the House of Commons. File photo.
MP Morrison calls Keystone XL permit cancellation ‘devastating news’

Kootenay-Columbia MP reacts to the Conservative Party’s removal of a controversial Ontario MP

Interior Health reported 91 new COVID-19 cases in the region Jan. 20, 2021 and three additional deaths. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
95 new COVID-19 cases in Interior Health, two deaths

Another member of Vernon’s Noric House has passed

An ARBOC Spirit of Freedom bus. Photo: BC Transit
Creston Valley Transit receives new fleet of buses

The 26-foot light-duty ARBOC Spirit of Freedom buses can carry up to 21 passengers and provide flexibility for up to two mobility aids.

Amanda Parsons, a registered nurse on staff at the Northwood Care facility, administers a dose of the Moderna vaccine to Ann Hicks, 77, in Halifax on Monday, Jan. 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan-Pool
61 new COVID-19 cases, two more deaths in Interior Health

Twenty-nine people are in hospital, seven of whom are in intensive care

Businesses continue to struggle under COVID-19 restrictions as the pandemic reaches the one-year mark. (B.C. government)
Another 564 COVID-19 cases, mass vaccine plan coming Friday

15 more deaths, community cluster declared in Williams Lake

A specialized RCMP team is investigating a suspicious trailer, which might have connections to the illicit drug trade, found abandoned outside a Cache Creek motel. (Photo credit: <em>Journal</em> files)
Police probe U-Haul trailer linked to illicit drugs left outside Cache Creek motel

Hazardous materials found inside believed to be consistent with the production of illicit drugs

From the left: Midway RCMP Csts. Jonathan Stermscheg and Chris Hansen, Public Servant Leanne Mclaren and Cpl. Phil Peters. Pictured in the front are Mclaren’s dog, Lincoln and Peters’ dog, Angel. Photo courtesy of BC RCMP
Midway Mounties commended for bringing firewood to elderly woman

Cpl. Phil Peters said he and detachment members acted after the woman’s husband went to hospital

Premier John Horgan leaves the podium following his first press conference of the year as he comments on various questions from the media in the Press Gallery at B.C. Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Monday, January 13, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Interprovincial travel restrictions a no-go, Horgan says after reviewing legal options

The B.C. NDP government sought legal advice as concerns of travel continue

Gem Lake Top, at Big White Ski Resort, seen at Jan. 8. (Big White Ski Resort)
Big White cancels $7.3M in lift tickets, accommodations due to COVID-19 orders

Since November, the ski resort has been forced to make several changes

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Darlene Curylo scratched a $3M ticket, BCLC’s largest ever scratch and win prize. (BCLC)
Kelowna woman in shock after winning BCLC’s largest-ever instant-ticket prize

Darlene Curylo couldn’t believe her eyes when she saw the amount of money she’d won from a scratch ticket

While each person has different reasons for becoming homeless, a UBCO study shows they learn through their interactions with different services to perform ‘as homeless’ based on the expectations of service providers. (Contributed)
Kelowna homeless forced to ‘perform’ for resources, says UBCO study

One participant in the study said ‘It is about looking homeless, but not too homeless’

Gov. Gen. Julie Payette takes the royal salute from the Guard of Honour as she makes her way deliver the the throne speech, Wednesday, September 23, 2020 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Chartrand
Gov. Gen. Julie Payette resigns, apologizes for ‘tensions’ at Rideau Hall

Payette, who is the Queen’s representative in Canada, has been the governor general since 2017

Most Read