Rady's Children Hospital is working with local health officials to test patients there and their caregivers for SARS-CoV-2, even if they has no signs of illness, to get a sense of the spread of the virus locally, the San Diego Union-Tribune reports.
"If they have, say, a broken leg or an earache or something else that's not necessarily COVID-related, we're going to offer testing to patients and their parents," Nick Holmes, Rady's chief operating officer, tells the Union-Tribune.
According to San Diego County, the project will begin by conducting about 400 tests a day and increase to about 2,000 tests a day over the course of the next six weeks. Participation in the project is voluntary, the paper adds, and the county press release notes testing for children will be free and the cost of testing for adults without insurance will be covered by the county.
The project organizers say such broad testing — Rady is the dominant provider of pediatric care in the region — will enable more accurate estimates of COVID-19 cases in the community and of how many asymptomatic cases there might be, the Union-Tribune adds.