PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Fred Meyer pharmacies around the country are now conducting antibody testing for people who want to know if they’ve developed some level of immunity to COVID-19.
It’s a diagnostic test if you’re curious to find out if you’ve come across the novel coronavirus and were asymptomatic or have been previously diagnosed and recovered — and wondering if you’ve developed an immunity.
“Having antibodies doesn’t give you a full immunity to the disease, but it also gives you a better understanding of it,” said Wassim Ayoub, the Pharmacy Practice Coordinator at Fred Meyer.
The antibody test can be easily scheduled on their website. It’s a non-invasive finger prick test, similar to testing for blood sugar. The test takes 5 minutes and results will be available in 15 minutes.
A bar will show up to let you know if you have short- or long-term antibodies to COVID or have developed no immunity at all.
Regardless of the results, knowledge is power.
Ayoub said this insight will help determined how to combat the disease.
“These individuals who have the long antibodies, their blood may be used in transfusion or studying more about why the antibodies stayed longer in certain individuals,” he said. “The scenarios are endless.”
Antibodies are what our bodies develop to fight viruses. They stick around even after the viruses go away in the hope of being a line of defense if the virus tries to come back.
It’s important to note that even if you test positive for antibodies it doesn’t give you full immunity to COVID-19. But it does give you insight into the diseases and how your body is responding to it.
And to be clear: This antibody test is for healthy people who have either recovered from COVID and no longer have symptoms or healthy people who are curious if they had it in the past and didn’t realize it.