According to the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the results from antibody testing can be wrong up to half of the time, which throws us a few steps back.
Antibody tests are used to detect whether a person has developed antibodies to the virus or not.
With the presence of antibodies (immunoglobulins), scientists can further discover whether they provide lasting immunity.
CDC says that these tests are not accurate enough to make decisions based on their results.
“Serologic test results should not be used to make decisions about grouping persons residing in or being admitted to congregate settings, such as schools, dormitories, or correctional facilities,” according to CDC.
They also advise health care workers to use only reliable antibody tests and to test the patients twice for more accurate results.
However, the biggest fear of doctors is a false-positive result.
When this happens (half of the time), people think they have antibodies to fight the virus and protect them from further infection, which is completely wrong and can lead to a disastrous outcome.
Firstly, some people may show false positive and actually never have been exposed to the virus, and secondly, even if antibodies do exist in the blood, there’s no immunity guarantee.
The higher the sensitivity of the test the better. Tests with only 90% accuracy are not a safe bet and can compromise the health of many individuals.