The array of COVID-19 testing options can cause confusion. As a trusted provider of employee health screening services for more than 35 years, Mobile Health can help you navigate the differences.
COVID-19 testing falls into two categories:
- A COVID-19 PCR nasal swab is used to diagnose an active infection. All NYC Mobile Health clinics offer these nasal swab tests. This viral test checks samples from the respiratory system (such as from inside of the nose) to determine infection with SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. During PCR swab testing, Mobile Health clinicians use a four-inch swab to collect samples from the back of the nose or throat. Test results are available in a few days, expediting the return of asymptomatic, healthy workers to the workplace.
- COVID-19 Point of Care antigen tests deliver rapid results and is a good screening test for asymptomatic individuals. Antigen tests play a critical role in the COVID-19 fight due to their simple design, rapid results, and scalability. To administer this antigen test, a trained technician collects a nasal respiratory sample using a short sterile swab. This specimen is combined with viral transport media and then transferred to a cassette. The cassette is inserted into the Quidel processor, which produces results in 15 minutes.
- An antibody test identifies a previous infection and possible immunity. The Antibody Test takes a semi-quantitative measurement of the SARS-CoV-2 specific IgG antibody levels. These antibodies correlate with the patient’s immune response after COVID-19 infection. Early evidence expects elevated levels of IgG in the majority of patients by 14 days after the onset of symptoms. Do not use antibody tests to diagnose a current infection. Currently, scientists don’t know whether antibodies provide protection (immunity) against getting infected again.
Coupling the temperature screening program with the appropriate testing ensures immediate testing of employees for COVID-19. This provides employers with valuable information they need to properly respond.