August 2021, Edition # 2
In this edition...
  1. With the study in progress for well over one year now, depending on your specific study site, find out how much momentum the study has gained, thanks to participants like yourself. Our new infographic, Facts at a Glance, provides a snapshot. 
  2. Participant Testimonial - Erin Gentry and Family. This family's story is an inspirational experience demonstrating how the study has been educational for some.  Feel free to contribute a testimonial or tell your story by emailing  
  3. Study Update: August 2021. We have some important updates for antibody testing and daily survey research programs.
  4. Answers to your FAQs. We've been listening to your feedback, surveying participants and tracking the questions that come into our Participant Help Center.  This section has the answers to some of our most frequently asked questions.
COVID-19 Community Research Partnership: Facts at a Glance
Since the beginning of the study, the data participants provide have significantly increased. As of August 2021: 
  • Almost 4.5 million Daily Symptoms Updates have been completed  
  • Over 40 thousand antibody testing participants have been enrolled, and 
  • The study demographic composition, including male vs. female, average participant age, etc. is available.
Click here to view an infographic which may help you to visualize this data.
Participant Testimonial:  Erin Gentry and Family
I'm Erin Gentry, an infectious disease pharmacist and I enrolled myself and the rest of my family in at-home antibody testing. My two sons Camden and Greyson have learned more about science during COVID than they might have in a classroom. 
Over the past 15 months, as an infectious diseases pharmacist in the time of COVID, I have found myself on a rollercoaster of emotions, ultimately working as hard as ever helping my patients. 

I enjoy the opportunity to include my husband and sons in an additional effort to help through the COVID Community Research Study. This way I can share my love of infectious diseases through the COVID Community Research Study.  
This way I can share my love of infectious diseases through the family’s participation in a “science project” with results that directly help the fight against COVID! 

The study experience has been positive and extremely motivating! From the daily symptom reviews to the monthly antibody testing, the process has been very organized and seamless. My boys, six-year-old Camden and twelve-year-old Grayson, both love science and are always asking questions. From discussing the steps of science study, to understanding how a blood test of antibodies shows how well our body is prepared to fight the virus, to the appreciating the shape of the coronavirus when viewed under a microscope, there have been many teaching opportunities. 

As you can see, we have enjoyed participating in this study. More importantly, my boys understand the need and importance of science in better understanding disease and keeping us safe. I encourage other families to participate in this rewarding educational opportunity. 
“I’ve enjoyed seeing how getting the vaccine helped my body make antibodies that show positive on my test now and will help me stay healthy going back to school” – Grayson, 12 years old (rising 8th grader at Jay M. Robinson Middle School in Charlotte)
Study Update - August 2021
Daily Surveys
Regardless of your participation in antibody testing, please continue to complete each daily survey. These syndromic updates will continue until approximately the end of October; if the study requires the surveys to continue beyond that time, you will receive a separate email addressing this, with a specific end date. Also, the daily survey questions will be changing soon to better reflect the current state of the pandemic—we'll send you an email with more information before the questions change.   

Your Continued Participation is Vital  
Given the time and effort spent to complete test kits, participants often wonder why repeated monthly testing is important. According to MedStar Health Research Institute's Principal Investigator, Dr. William Weintraub, “The repeated serology testing allows us to compare antibodies to COVID-19 induced by infection vs vaccination, allowing us to confirm positive antibodies and how long they last.” 

Your continued participation in the serology testing component of this study is important for the purpose of understanding, responding to, and potentially developing new treatments to address the COVID-19 emergency. 
Answers to FAQs
Q. The COVID-19 situation appears to be worsening, due to new variants of the virus. What can I do to stay safe? 

A. We recommend you follow the latest CDC guidelines and frequently check for updates.  You can also subscribe to email updates from the CDC to stay informed of the latest recommendations and advisories.  Click here to view the CDC's latest released guidelines. 

Q. I’ve been vaccinated, should I continue participating in antibody testing?

A. Yes, you should keep participating! One goal of this study is to measure vaccine efficacy, which is done by monitoring your antibody levels at different times following vaccination. 

Q. I’ve already returned one or more test kits, does that mean I should stop antibody testing?

A. No, you should not stop.  We still need your continued participation to analyze antibody levels over several months.  This is not intended to be a “one and done” test.  However, the study will begin to wind down this Fall, and there are only a couple more test kits coming your way before the study ends.