According to a Nov. 10 news release, HCPH outreach teams carrying identification cards and wearing yellow vests will visit randomly selected homes throughout the county from now until Dec. 15 between the hours of 8 a.m.-5 p.m. in search of residents willing to participate in the survey. County residents who agree to participate will be asked to provide answers to survey questions and to provide blood samples that will be tested for the presence of COVID-19 antibodies.
"This survey is a very important way that local residents can help public health workers fight this virus," HCPH Executive Director Umair Shah said in a statement. "By finding out how widespread this illness is, we can develop strategies that will help us control the spread of COVID-19."
According to the release, the goals of the survey are to:
- understand what caused COVID-19 to spread in certain areas;
- understand how COVID-19 has spread in Harris County;
- understand how COVID-19 transmission and infection rates differ among communities;
- determine the effectiveness of containment strategies that have been utilized during the pandemic;
- identify the percentage of Harris county residents infected with COVID-19 with no symptoms; and
- improve public health messaging to help stop the spread of COVID-19.
According to the release, participation is voluntary, and only homes approached by the teams are eligible to participate. Upon completion, the survey results will assist policymakers and health experts understand how vulnerable the community remains to COVID-19 and how frequently asymptomatic and mild cases occur.
Additional survey partners include Baylor College of Medicine Dr. Katherine B. Ensor, the Houston Health Department and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. For more information about the ongoing coronavirus pandemic in Harris County, click here.