Lafayette General Health began offering voluntary coronavirus antibody testing to its employees this week. It will offer the lab-based serology test to all of its 4,500-plus employees and nearly 1,200 providers across its health system.
The antibody test, provided by Abbott, can determine if a person’s immune system has created antibodies in response to COVID-19. Presence of the IgG antibody indicates the individual has been infected with COVID-19.
“It is important to note that this test does not prove that a person is immune to future infection with COVID-19. Because this virus is new, there is not enough information at this time to determine what defines COVID-19 immunity and how long immunity may last,” says Dr. Amanda C. Logue, Lafayette General Health senior vice president and chief medical officer.
The COVID-19 antibody test is administered by a simple blood draw, and results will be provided within 24-48 hours of collection.
“We understand a test like this could create a false sense of security. It is critical that everyone, regardless of test status or result, continues to follow the latest social distancing, PPE protection and infection control measures,” continues Logue. “Everyone should continue washing their hands, cleaning high-touch areas and staying home when they are sick.”
Once the majority of its employees, providers and community physicians have been tested, LGH will expand testing to patients. Patients will need an order from their physician in order to receive the lab test and should not go to any LGH diagnostics center without an order.