Covid-19 Testing in Kansas City
What Is A Coronavirus Antibody Test?
Also known as SARS-CoV-2 AB test, this test checks for the presence of coronavirus antibodies in the blood.
The antibody test is very different from the molecular COVID-19 test, which is done with a nasal swab and checks for the presence of the COVID-19 virus itself.
Antibodies are produced by the immune system at least 7 days after infection and remain positive long after you have recovered from the disease and are no longer contagious. An antibody test is mainly used to detect whether you have previously been infected with the coronavirus.
Which Antibodies Will Be Tested?
We utilize LabCorp’s ELISA assay to test for three SARS-CoV-2 antibody bands: IgG, IgM and IgA.
IgG turns positive within 7-20 days of infection and tends to persist for over 6 months (likely years).
IgM turns positive within 7-20 days of infection onset, peaks at 80 days and fades away within 6 months.
IgA, from the limited data available, is assumed it should follow the same course as IgM.
Who Can Get The COVID-19 Antibody Test?
KC Wellness Center is offering the antibody test to asymptomatic patients only. (Those who are not exhibiting any signs or symptoms of active infection.)If you have a mild cough or runny nose or still recovering – we have to wait until you recover completely in order to test.
We cannot accommodate any sick visits for the COVID-19 antibody blood test at this time.
For the above mentioned reasons, all patients will need to consult KC Wellness Center personnel via telemedicine or in-person before they can be considered for the COVID-19 antibody test.
If you are already in our office for another reason, we can offer you testing done on-the-spot.
Where Is the COVID-19 Antibody Test Done?
KC Wellness Center is offering the blood test to asymptomatic patients at our Northland location.
Our provider will make sure you are asymptomatic at the time of the blood draw.
Our provider will also document the timing and the nature of your previous symptoms (if any).
Last but not least, our provider will counsel you on the limitations of the test and interpretation of results.
How Long Do Results Take?
For laboratory blood tests – 48 hours
For in-office tests – 10-15 minutes
Since the test is very new, this may change with time.
Will My Insurance Cover The Test?
All of the major insurance carriers have agreed to pay for the laboratory antibody test 100% regardless of patients deductible. This is the information we have been provided by our CLA certified laboratories. Our office charges a one time fee of $150 for problem focussed COVID 19 consultation and phlebotomy service.
Laboratory blood tests – $250 without insurance
Laboratory blood test- $150 with insurance
In-office point of care test – $200
The price includes an initial consultation either on the phone or in-person.
Is It FDA Approved?
Several tests have “Emergency Use Authorization (EUA)” but are not “FDA Approved” yet.
Does A Positive Test Mean Immunity?
A positive serologic result indicates that an individual has likely produced an immune response to the SARS-CoV-2 virus. A negative serologic result indicates that an individual has not developed detectable antibodies at the time of testing. While contingent on a variety of factors, this could be due to testing too early in the course of COVID-19, the absence of exposure to the virus or the lack of an adequate immune response, which can be due to conditions or treatments that suppress immune function. It is possible that a positive test could mean a person is immune to COVID-19, but it is not guaranteed.
Benefits Of Antibody Testing
Antibody tests can show how common COVID-19 is. Once scientists know who has had the virus, they can find out how sick it makes most people and they can study what happens if people who’ve had it are exposed to it again. When paired with other scientific information, this can help researchers understand who might be immune to the virus. The hope is that people with antibodies to COVID-19 will be able to safely get back to work, and normal life, quicker.
These tests may also help with an experimental treatment for COVID-19 called convalescent plasma, which involved the plasma, or liquid part of your blood, being transfused from someone who has recovered from the virus to someone who is still battling the illness.
There Has Been Some Concern In The Media Regarding The Reliability Of The Antibody Test. Is The Test You Are Offering Reliable?
The concern for reliability has been mostly directed at the point of use the finger prick test. There have been many testing kits offered for sale to health care professionals by many new companies entering the market. We have chosen to pass on those tests due to the concern of unknown quality control up to this point. One of the largest medical and laboratory supply companies in the world, BD (BioMedomics), has recently made the finger prick COVID-19 antibody test available only to CLIA certified laboratories and physicians. Although there are no COVID-19 antibody tests on the market that have been approved by the FDA, we have high confidence in BD and the products they offer. For now, this is the best point of use test we have available. In addition to point of use, KC Wellness Center is utilizing LabCorp of America for serum testing (we collect one vial of blood). This test is very reliable and is covered by insurance (see pricing for consultation/phlebotomy service). More information on serum testing can be found on the LabCorp website.
If I Am Experiencing Symptoms Of COVID-19 How Can I Get Tested?
Lab Corp is now offering an at home test kit that you can order online. The cost for the kit is $119. Lab Corp is working with patients to get the cost of the kit reimbursed by health insurance. Information and ordering can be done at: COVID-19 Home Test Kit