Just 5.5% of Dutch blood donors have coronavirus antibodies

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Some 5.5% of blood donors in the Netherlands have antibodies against coronavirus in their systems, according to research by blood bank organisation Sanquin.

The blood of some 7,000 people who donated between May 10 and May 20 was tested for antibodies. Earlier testing, carried out at the beginning of April, found just 3% of donors had coronavirus antibodies in their blood.

‘I would imagine that the increase is modest because we are at the tail end of the epidemic and the measures would appear to be working,’ spokesman Hans Zaaijer told broadcaster RTL Nieuws.

‘But we are miles away from being in a position where we have reached herd immunity,’ he said. ‘If it is the case that people who have had the virus develop antibodies, then it is clear 90% of donors have not been in contact with the virus.’

Blood donors are not representative of the general population, Zaaijer said.

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