Large demand for COVID-19 antibody blood tests

If you want to find out if you have been exposed to coronavirus, but you are not sick or show symptoms. Your options are limited, but on Saturday, over a hundred people paid for and drove through a mobile serology testing clinic in Burbank.

Organized by the HOT Clinic, it’s meant to give people a chance to find out if they have antibodies for the virus in their blood.

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The World Health Organization says that it’s too early in the pandemic to know if having antibodies makes a person immune to getting sick. At the same time, politicians from Washington to Los Angeles are asking for more testing.  If enough people test positive without getting sick, it’s a good indicator that restrictions can start being eased, if slowly.

Swab testing takes days to come back, while blood tests results are available within ten minutes. 

The possibility of false negatives can be diminished with repeated tests, if need be, say health practitioners who support the serology route. Still, the FDA is being slow on approving blood testing, and county health departments are not supporting them for the general public, at least for now.

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