Toronto, ON., November 23, 2020 –LifeLabs is pleased to announce today the launch of a COVID-19 antibody test. The Roche Elecsys SARS-CoV-2 Total Ab test, a serology test approved by Health Canada, will help customers and their health care providers assess and determine prior COVID-19 infection.
Antibody testing, also known as serology testing, is not used to diagnose acute COVID-19 infection. However, it can help individuals and their health care providers understand if they’ve had prior infection or exposure to COVID-19—even if they were asymptomatic. Serology tests and results should not be used to rule out active infection.
Antibody responses to the virus take some time to develop and vary between individuals. For the most accurate results (results with the highest sensitivity), it is recommended that the antibody test is ordered 3-4 weeks post-onset of symptoms or post-exposure. However, based on current studies, antibodies to the COVID-19 virus can be detected for a number of months post-exposure*. It is also important to note that having COVID-19 antibodies does not infer immunity.
“As we continue to increase our capacity for molecular COVID-19 testing in our labs to detect the virus, we’re pleased to also offer antibody testing as another piece of the puzzle to better understand COVID-19,” said Charles Brown, President & CEO of LifeLabs. “With this, we look forward to continue building our support for the health care system’s response to the pandemic; where Canadians have access to more important COVID-19 information to help them make informed decisions about their health.”
Currently, LifeLabs’ COVID-19 antibody test is available for individual consumer purchase in B.C. and Ontario at $75. Customers have the option to pre-pay online at lifelabs.com, or they can purchase at a LifeLabs collection site with a signed requisition from a health care provider. Customers can visit any LifeLabs location with a signed requisition to get a blood sample collected for the antibody test. Appointments are recommended, although walk-ins are welcome.
If you’re interested in getting the COVID-19 antibody test, please talk to your health care provider. For more information on steps to getting the COVID-19 antibody test, as well as FAQs about the test, process, and reviewing your results, visit our COVID-19 antibody test page on lifelabs.com.
LifeLabs is Canada’s leading provider of laboratory diagnostic information and digital health connectivity systems, enabling patients and health care practitioners to diagnose, treat, monitor, and prevent disease. We support 20 million patient visits annually and conduct over 100 million laboratory tests through leading-edge technologies and our 5,700 talented and dedicated employees. We are a committed innovator in supporting Canadians to live healthier lives, operating Canada’s first commercial genetics lab and the country’s largest online patient portal, with more than 4.1 million Canadians receiving their results online. LifeLabs is 100% Canadian owned by OMERS Infrastructure, the infrastructure investment manager of one of Canada’s largest defined benefit pension plans. Learn more at lifelabs.com.
* At this time, it is not known if the presence of antibodies to COVID-19 means an individual is immune to the virus and protected from re-infection. Antibody response can significantly vary for individuals, may wane over time, and may not be detectable in immunocompromised individuals. When reviewing results, it is important to note that a negative result does not rule out previous infection.