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Warning COVID-19 antibody testing services

COVID-19 antibody testing services made available to members of the public

Some UK providers such as high street pharmacies and private healthcare providers offer COVID-19 antibody testing for members of the public.

The test involves collecting a finger prick blood sample into a small container following a set of instructions. The container is then sent to a laboratory for analysis and the results are returned direct to the person who took the test, with an indication of the reliability of the result.

The laboratory tests are CE marked and safe for use on blood drawn from the vein by a healthcare professional, but have not yet been validated by the manufacturer of the test to be used with a finger prick blood sample. The sample collection kits have not yet been validated for home use and we can’t be sure that people collecting samples at home currently have sufficient support to collect samples in a way that the laboratory can process to give reliable results and therefore should only be used by a fully trained healthcare professional.

It’s very important for people at home to be able to understand the reliability of the result and what it means for them.

The science regarding immunity from COVID-19 is still emerging and the implications of a positive antibody result are as yet unknown. A positive result may not mean a person is immune or if they have antibodies now, or how long this will last.

The Beaumont Practice strongly advise members of the public or organisations who have purchased these tests and received antibody results to continue to follow the Government’s advice whatever the result of the test.

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