Which Test to Have? Covid-19 nasal swab test or antibody blood test?

Fordland ClinicEvents, Healthcare

A COVID-19 performed with a nasal swab will confirm whether or not you have an active infection with SARS-CoV-2. New research shows that you do not need to have any signs of being sick to be infected. You can give the virus to others even without having symptoms of COVID-19. Who should get tested? These are a few reasons to consider having the nasal swab test:

  • If you have symptoms of COVID-19 including, but not limited to, shortness of breath, fever, cough, runny nose, chills, sore throat or body aches, loss of taste or smell.
  • If you have been in close contact (within 6ft.) with someone who has COVID-19

Antibody blood test checks for a type of antibody called immunoglobulin G (IgG) that is the result of past or recent exposure to COVID-19, also known as the novel coronavirus (this is not a test for an active infection). The human body produces IgG antibodies as part of the immune response to the virus. It usually takes around 10 days to start producing enough antibodies to be detected in the blood. However, in some people it may take several weeks.

Test results may help identify if you were previously exposed to the virus and, if exposed, can check whether or not your body has produced antibodies. Currently, the FDA supports antibody testing with the following important points:

  • Antibody tests can play a critical role in the fight against COVID-19
  • Testing can help identify who may have been exposed to SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes the COVID-19 infection, and potentially developed an immune response
  • Right now, it is unclear whether these individuals may be less susceptible to infection.
  • If you were never diagnosed with COVID-19, this test can help determine if you may have been previously exposed to the virus.
  • If you were diagnosed with COVID-19, this test can check whether or not your body has produced antibodies.

Do antibodies mean that you’re now immune to COVID-19? At this time, we don’t really know what the presence of coronavirus antibodies means. It doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re immune to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). Medical science has yet to determine what level of antibodies confirm immunity, if immunity is possible, or how long immunity might last. The virus that causes COVID-19 was only discovered in December 2019. The result of a positive antibody test means nothing given the current gaps in knowledge about COVID-19. Until there is more definitive information, we should assume, even with positive antibodies, that a person may still be susceptible to the coronavirus.

By appointment, Fordland Clinic will hold a free* drive-thru Covid-19 nasal swab testing and antibody (blood drawn) testing on Tuesday, June 30th starting at 8:30am. Please call 417-767-2273 for scheduling and information.

 *There will be no cost to you. If you have insurance, a claim will be filed. If insurance does not cover the cost, you will not be charged.