COVID-19 Antibody Testing Update
PALM Health is currently offering SARS-CoV-2 virus antibody testing to the St. Louis community. Our current test evaluates for antibodies to the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19, which may tell us whether you have been exposed to, or previously infected with, the virus.
This test is 97% sensitive, which means that if 100 people who had been infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 were tested, this test would be positive in 97 of them. This test is 99% specific, which means that if we tested 100 people who had not been infected with the virus, 99 of them would have a negative test.
The lab we use for this test, Vibrant Labs, is our preferred lab for testing because:
- It is a US-based company that specializes in antibody testing.
- Validity testing was done on a US-based human sample, in comparison to other labs which may use non-human or non-US controls. This validity testing may be more relevant to detecting COVID-19 in our US population.
- Most labs are only testing a single antibody type (IgG) against a single component of the virus, resulting in 1 touchpoint. This lab tests for 3 antibodies (IgG, IgM, and IgA) against 4 components of the virus, resulting in 12 touchpoints, allowing for a comprehensive immune profile.
- Importantly, this lab tests for both IgM (recent infection) and IgG (past infection) to help us understand immunity along multiple timelines of potential exposure and infection. We are finding that some people are testing IgM positive but not IgG positive because they have not yet developed their IgG antibodies. Therefore this test allows us to detect people in the interim phase of developing past infection antibodies.
- Vibrant Labs submitted for FDA Emergency Use Authorization in March 2020. As of May 5, 2020, Vibrant Labs has contacted the FDA, who have confirmed that their application is in good order.
Schedule an appointment for antibody testing with our medical scheduler by calling 314-801-8898 option 1, then 2. We will provide detailed instructions on how to prepare at home as well as our on-site safety protocols for when you arrive for testing. Questions? Please call our reception or navigator teams at 314-801-8898 option 1 and then 1 or 3.
For more information, please read our COVID-19 Antibody Testing One Sheet.