Sky Lakes Medical Center will make COVID-19 serology antibody tests available to the public beginning Monday, April 27.
The test identifies the presence of immune response to SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, by detecting antibodies to the virus in individuals’ blood. The test is not intended to diagnose recent or active infection.
A positive serology result suggests the patient is less likely to get infected or re-infected compared with individuals who do not have any antibodies in their blood.
“Having data on antibodies is helpful for estimating how prevalent the virus is in our community,” said Holly Montjoy, M.D., a physician at Cascades East Family Medicine Clinic.
This test is for recovered or patients who do not have symptoms, not for those who have symptoms or think they have active virus, she said. People who have symptoms, such as fever, shortness of breath, or coughing, should have the antigen test, not the antibody blood test.
A physician’s order is not required for the blood test at this time, although patients are encouraged to contact their primary care provider to assure proper follow-through. The test is covered by most insurance companies with no co-pay or out-of-pocket expenses.
Regardless of whether the test indicates antibodies, wearing a fabric mask in public and practicing physical distancing (at least 6 feet) are still necessary precautions.
Blood draws are available at these Sky Lakes locations weekdays:
- Inside Registration on Sky Lakes Medical Center’s first floor, hours are 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.;
- In the Sky Lakes Collaborative Health Center on the medical center campus, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.; and
- At the Sky Lakes Washburn Annex, Washburn Way and Crosby Avenue, 7 a.m. to 4 p.m., closed noon to 1 p.m. for lunch.
Tests to detect whether you’ve been infected by the COVID-19 virus are available at the Sky Lakes drive-up site at the Community Health Education Center, 2200 N. Eldorado Blvd., 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays, and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays.
NOTE: This test is covered by most insurance companies with no co-pay.