COLUMBUS (WCMH) – Antibody testing is part of the national discussion regarding the country treating COVID-19.
The test is now available in central Ohio, OhioHealth starting antibody testing on Friday.
But the test is not available to everyone who wants it.
To take the test, people need an order from their health care provider, and then each patient must review these results with their health care provider.
OhioHealth can currently perform approximately 500 to 600 antibody tests per day.
A few states are doing more community-wide antibody testing, but that’s not what Ohio does.
Dr. Joseph Gastaldo, medical director of the infectious disease system for OhioHealth, said that antibodies are what your body produces to respond to infections.
Some infections have been studied for many, many years, so there is a much better idea whether antibodies immunize us or not.
According to Gastaldo, the coronavirus produces an antibody, but since COVID-19 is so new, it is too early to say exactly what it does. He said there is speculation that the antibody offers some protection, but it is too early to be sure.
“An antibody test definitely cannot be used alone to say that someone has had COVID-19, number 1,” said Gastaldo. “Number 2, an antibody test right now, we’re not sure it will provide any type of immunity, which means you can’t get it back. We still have to wait until new data and studies are published on this subject. “
Another thing that Gastaldo wants to let people know is that just because someone has a positive antibody test doesn’t mean they take social distancing less seriously.