Florida Public Health Review

Publication Date



Background: The SARS-CoV-2 virus responsible for severe respiratory infection associated with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) was first confirmed in Florida on March 1, 2020. Responding to the pandemic, multi-agency collaborative partnerships put in place actions integrating point-of-care antibody testing at established large-scale COVID-19 testing sites where the baseline seropositivity of COVID-19 in health care workers and first responders in Florida at the start of the pandemic was established.

Purpose: Determine the seropositivity of healthcare workers and first responders at five drive thru testing sites using a rapid SARS-CoV-2 antibody test in Florida from May 6 through June 3, 2020.

Methods: The first drive-thru SARS-CoV-2 antibody test site was opened at Miami Hard Rock Stadium, May 6, 2020. Testing expanded to three additional sites on May 9, 2020: Jacksonville, Orlando, and Palm Beach. The fifth and final site, Miami Beach, began testing on May 21, 2020. Healthcare workers and first responder’s self-seeking SARS-CoV-2 testing were designated for antibody testing and completed a laboratory collection form on-site for the point-of-care test. All testing was performed on whole blood specimens (obtained by venipuncture) using the Cellex Inc. qSARS-CoV-2 IgG/IgM Rapid Test. Seropositivity was assessed by univariate analysis and by logistic regression including the covariates age, sex, race/ethnicity, and testing location.

Results and Discussion: As of June 3, 2020, of 5,779 healthcare workers and first responders tested, 4.1% were seropositive (range 2.6–8.2%). SARS-COV-2 antibody tests had higher odds of being positive for persons testing at the Miami Hard Rock Stadium (aOR 2.24 [95% C.I. 1.48-3.39]), persons of Haitian/Creole ethnicity (aOR 3.28 [95% C.I. 1.23-8.72]), Hispanic/Latino(a) ethnicity (aOR 2.17 [95% C.I. 1.50-3.13], and Black non-Hispanic persons (aOR 1.63 [95% C.I. 1.08-2.46]). SARS-COV-2 antibody prevalence among first responders and healthcare workers in five sites in Florida varied by race and ethnicity and by testing location.