Last Updated on June 5, 2020
Definition of Terms
- Coronaviruses (CoV) – a large family of viruses that cause illnesses ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV).
- Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) – the virus strain that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) which is a respiratory illness. It is colloquially known as the coronavirusand was previously referred to its provisional name 2019 novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV).
- Antibody or Immunoglobulin (Ig) – a protective protein produced by the immune system in response to the presence of a foreign substance, called an antigen.
- Immunoglobulin M (IgM) – detection of IgM antibody indicates a recent infection.
- Immunoglobulin G (IgG) – produced later and lasts long, which can be used as an indicator of previous or secondary infection.
- Real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (rRT-PCR) assay – This is currently the recommended test to confirm COVID-19 infection which can be used to detect the virus. Through this assay, SARS-CoV-2 can be detected in nasal or pharyngeal samples.
1. What is COVID-19 IgG and IgM Rapid Antibody Test (RAT)?
This Antibody Test qualitatively detects the presence of IgM and IgG antibodies against the COVID-19 virus in human serum, plasma and venous whole blood specimen for the auxiliary diagnosis of COVID-19 infection.
The COVID-19 RAT CANNOT be used as a standalone test to definitively diagnose COVID-19 as rRT-PCR test remains to be the gold standard in determining whether a person is infected or infectious. The COVID-19 RAT CANNOT be used for screening for COVID-19 disease, mass testing or self-testing.
2. Who can take the test?
- Patients with no symptoms but with history of close contacts of confirmed COVID-19 cases, or persons classified as suspected cases, who have completed the 14-day quarantine period.
- Patients with no symptoms for at least 14 days, without any of the following:
- sore throat / throat irritation
- shortness of breath/ difficulty of breathing
- new anosmia (loss of sense of smell) and/or ageusia (loss of sense of taste)
- colds or nasal congestion
- muscle pain
3. What must I bring to the clinic on the date of my test?
All patients are required to wear a mask upon entry to our clinics and keep the mask on for the duration of their stay.
All patients must bring a laboratory request form duly accomplished by their physician that contains a request for Rapid Antibody Test. This means that they have been screened, interviewed, and assessed by a licensed physician that has deemed them eligible to undergo Rapid Antibody Testing.
If the patient does not have a laboratory request form, patients must be pre-screened by going through the TMCC Health Declaration Form checklist. Only asymptomatic patients are allowed entry to clinic. Patients will be referred to TMCC Physician on duty for assessment, filling out of request form and Case Information Form (CIF). The doctor who saw the patient will be responsible for reviewing results of the test and make the necessary evaluation, clinical correlation and recommendation for the patient. Communication of the results with patient (if needed) will be through teleconsultation, unless necessary to request for patient to come back for a face to face consultation.
4. What sample is used in the test?
Blood specimen from venous extraction.
5. When will I get my results?
Results are forwarded by email to the patient and to the requesting attending physician after 24-48 hours. Results will have an initial interpretation from our clinic physicians but should still be explained by the patient’s attending physician to complete the patient assessment. Only a licensed medical practitioner can prescribe the use of RAT kits and interpret results by clinical correlation.
6. How much is Rapid Antibody Testing in The Medical City Clinic?
For pricing inquiries and other questions regarding COVID-19 Rapid Antibody testing, please call us at (02) 8396-9899 or message our Facebook Page.