CULLMAN - Cullman Regional Medical Center has announced that community members can now get a COVID-19 antibody test at three different locations: Cullman Regional Urgent Care Center, Cullman Regional Family & Internal Medicine and Cullman Regional Family Care.
“With so much unknown about the Coronavirus, there is equally as much unknown about the COVID-19 antibody test,” Cullman Regional Chief Medical Officer Dr. William Smith said. “However, many local community members are simply curious to see if they have the antibodies or not.”
“Results should be viewed with caution as it is not known if the presence of antibodies, indicated by a positive test actually indicates immunity or protection from COVID-19 infection,” Smith said. “Patients should consult their healthcare providers with any questions about testing or test results.”
The COVID-19 antibody test is a blood test that tests for antibodies to the virus that causes COVID-19. Testing will help find out if you may have antibodies to the virus that causes COVID-19. Patients must be symptom-free as it takes 2-3 weeks after the virus to develop antibodies.
Antibody tests let you know if you have been exposed to SARS-CoV-2. They do not tell you if you are immune. The results, along with other information, can help your healthcare provider make informed recommendations about your care. This test can be useful in identifying convalescent plasma donors.
If you have a positive test result, it is very likely that you have previously been exposed to COVID-19 and have developed an antibody response to the virus. There is also a small chance that this test can give a positive result that is wrong.
A negative test result means that the antibodies to the virus that causes COVID-19 were not found in your specimen. However, it is possible for this test to give a negative result that is incorrect in some people with COVID-19. A negative result may occur if you are tested early in your illness and your body hasn’t had time to produce antibodies to the infection. This means you could possibly still have COVID-19 even though the test is negative.
Having a positive antibody test does not necessarily indicate that an individual is protected against re-infection.
in having the COVID-19 antibody test, talk to your doctor or visit www.CullmanRegional.com.
See complete story in the Northwest Alabamian.