Have I had it? Kamloops LifeLabs offering private COVID-19 antibody test | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Have I had it? Kamloops LifeLabs offering private COVID-19 antibody test

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November 25, 2020 - 7:00 AM

Have you wondered if you had COVID-19 already, with or without symptoms? A lab Kamloops can give you that information for a fee. 

LifeLabs has launched a COVID-19 antibody test in select locations in B.C. and Kamloops is the only location in the southern Interior, according to a release.

The serology test is approved by Health Canada and indicates whether or not an individual has already had COVID-19, even if they were asymptomatic.

A serology test is different from a COVID-19 test, as it does not diagnose an active case. It is only used to detect antibodies from a past case of COVID-19, not other strains of coronavirus. 

To take the test, you must provide a signed requisition from your health care provider and pay the $75 fee. You will then provide a blood sample at a LifeLabs location in Kamloops.

Antibodies to COVID-19 virus can be detected up to four months post-exposure, but taking the test three to four weeks following the onset of symptoms or post-exposure will produce the most accurate results.

“As we continue to increase our capacity for molecular COVID-19 testing in our labs to detect the virus, we’re pleased to also offer antibody testing as another piece of the puzzle to better understand COVID-19,” Charles Brown, President & CEO of LifeLabs, said in a release.

“With this, we look forward to continue building our support for the health care system’s response to the pandemic; where Canadians have access to more important COVID-19 information to help them make informed decisions about their health.”

If the test result is positive, it does not mean that individual is immune to COVID-19, and cannot determine whether or not they are infectious. LifeLabs suggests encouraging those you were in contact with to get tested for the virus.

A negative result does not rule out previous infection, as there are variables that will affect the number of detectable antibodies in the blood. Antibody response can vary for each individual, can decrease over time, and may not be detectable in immunocompromised individuals.

To book an appointment online, click here. While appointments are encouraged, walk-ins are also welcome. 

Results will be available within 1 to 2 business days following sample collection, and will be sent to your ordering physician.

For more information on the serology test, click here.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Brie Welton or call (250) 819-3723 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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