RAPID CITY, S.D. (KELO) — A lot of people are wondering whether they’ve been exposed or infected with COVID-19. Monday, Monument Health in Rapid City launched a new test that will give you answers.
This new test is for anyone who thinks they may have been exposed to COVID-19, to find out if they’ve developed immunity.
“It will be performed at Mayo Clinic and the value of this test it is able to detect antibodies that we have in our blood to COVID-19,” Michelle Stephens, VP of Operations at Monument Health, said.
It takes about 10 days for those antibodies to show up in your bloodstream.
“So after you believe you’ve been exposed or your post onset of symptoms of 10 days, you’re going to call our nurse triage line. And the nurse triage line is going to walk you through a couple of questions,” Emily Leech, Director of Lab Services at Monument Health, said.
After you call the nurse triage line, a nurse will set up an appointment for you to get your blood drawn. The sample is then sent to Mayo Clinic where you will get results back in about five days.
The test will also let you find out if you carried the illness but didn’t have symptoms.
“We do not use an antibody test to diagnose an active COVID-19 infection. So it’s more used to see if you have been exposed in the past but it is not used to diagnose,” Stephens said.
It will also help health care professionals learn more about the virus in patients who’ve developed an immunity.
The test costs $100. Monument Health is working with the Mayo Clinic on developing a research project to determine if blood plasma from recovered COVID-19 patients could treat hospital patients with severe infections.