Health commissioner says serologic tests lack necessary accuracy

Published: Apr. 17, 2020 at 5:54 PM EDT
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Antibody tests aren't accurate enough to use to diagnose whether someone may be immune to COVID-19. That was the message Friday from the Vermont health commissioner after a working group came back with recommendations about serology testing late Thursday night.

Earlier this week, we showed you how the antibody tests worked to try to identify whether someone's blood has antibodies that show they already were exposed to the coronavirus and may have some level of protection from it.

But Dr. Mark Levine said they will be relying on other factors because the tests are too new and their results unproven.

"Currently available serologic tests do not have sufficient accuracy or reliability to make decisions or recommendations to change individual or population level behaviors," Levine said.

He did say that Vermont would be looking at adopting them as part of their broader assessment of how many people here may have had exposure to the virus. And he said the working group will meet again in a month to reevaluate.

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