Fifth Viral Wave Study

The Action to Beat Coronavirus (Ab-C) Study continues to track the course of the COVID-19 pandemic in Canada. An additional poll and dry blood spot collection in a subset of about 1,000 Ab-C participants took place from June to mid-July 2022.

Our preliminary analysis indicates that about 15% of Canadian adults without a previous infection were infected with the coronavirus during the second Omicron wave (when the BA.2 subvariant was dominant), compared with 30% newly infected during the first Omicron (BA.1/1.1) wave, and 11% in all waves prior to Omicron.

Figure 1. Percentage of Canadians without prior infection who were infected in each viral period
  1. With current levels of transmission, a majority of Canadian adults have now had at least one infection (along with close to 90% having at least two doses for COVID-19 vaccines).
  2. The big question now is what’s happening with Omicron BA.5, the dominant subvariant that is circulating this fall.
  3. To study the current wave,the Ab-C team and Angus Reid Forum have sent out approximately 6,000 kits for dried blood spot samples and 16,000 online surveys to ask people about their experiences with testing and symptoms during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Here is how you can help

You can contribute to the success of the study and help fill gaps in knowledge about the extent of the Omicron viral waves by sending back your samples (if you were asked to do so) and completing the most recent online survey that will be available from September 28th to October 12th.

Please check your e-mail for the invitation to participate

Visit for more information about the study