Current protocols offer to test for COVID-19 to people who are already having symptoms, or those who have been exposed to the virus. This nasal swab test commonly used detects virus DNA in the nasal cavity and enables us to triage and isolate infected individuals appropriately.
For those of us without symptoms, social distancing has been the rule, but we have limited experience on the effectiveness of this strategy. Data from Iceland showed us that up to 50% of coronavirus cases can be asymptomatic. Even those who develop symptoms later may have spread the virus already for 2-14 days without even knowing.
Perhaps it’s time to re-think the current paradigm of largely denying COVID-19 testing to asymptomatic individuals. The rationale against drive-through testing, as implemented in Germany and South Korea, has been the limited availability of test kits and the uncertain impact of false positives.
However, several lab companies are now producing test kits ready for validity testing and early FDA approval. If our goal is to limit exposing particularly vulnerable high-risk individuals to COVID-19, then everyone exposed to these populations should know their status ASAP.
The time has come that COVID-19 testing is available for asymptomatic people who may come into contact with those at high risk. This will not impact the ability of local healthcare facilities to continue testing symptomatic and high-risk individuals as they have been.
Knowing their COVID-19 infectious status, asymptomatic individuals will be empowered to make safer more educated decisions about contacting others. Negative individuals or those already recovered presumed immunes mobilized to help support vulnerable populations and those who come up positive will have more definitive motivation to maintain strict social isolation.
Peak Health Group Leads The Paradigm Shift
We are taking the lead in this paradigm shift and offering asymptomatic individuals in the following high impact groups access to a new COVID-19 blood test developed by Vibrant America.
- High-risk individuals (Age <65, Lung Disease, Heart Disease, Immunocompromised)
- Caregiver for a high-risk individual (as above)
- Live with or otherwise in contact with high-risk individuals
- Live with or otherwise in contact with young children
- First responder with likely contact with high-risk individuals
- The worker is an essential business exposed to the general public
Here is some specific information about the New Vibrant America COVID-19 blood test being offered.
- The data collected from your sample will be used anonymously to validate this new test
- Testing requires a blood draw which is done in our office 131 Orange Ave suite 100
- If you are symptomatic, you will NOT be tested. You must go to ER or Urgent care for that
- This test will detect IgM (recent) and IgG (past) exposure antibodies for COVID-19 in your blood
- We must have a scheduled appointment to be tested. No walk-in testing will be performed.
- You will be screened to assure you are appropriate for the test before scheduling
- You will be asked to wait outside the office until all surfaces wiped down and ready for you
- We will draw your blood and process the sample free of charge
- The cost of the test is $149 which will be paid directly to the Vibrant America laboratory
- Results are expected in 3-5 working days and you will be informed by a call or an email