What is the antigen test?

This antigen test, like the PCR swabs that are currently being used in urgent care clinics and hospitals, can detect active coronavirus infection (antigen tests detect specific proteins on the surface of the virus, while PCR tests detect the virus’s genetic material).

The antigen test is a rapid nasal swab test (similar to a flu swab) with results available in less than an hour, unlike the PCR test that may take several days to a week to result. Please note that depending on the volume of testing it may take several hours for our staff to process and result your test. Positive results are highly accurate. False negatives may occur in about 15 percent of tests performed. Antigen testing is only available to patients due to the limited supply we currently have in stock.  Antigen testing will be billed to insurance and we expect that most plan will cover test at 100%. However, if your test is not covered by your insurance then your credit card on file will be charged  $50.00.

What is the antibody test?

  • In general, an antibody test is used to determine if a person has been exposed to and has an immunity to an infection.
  • We do not yet know if having antibodies to COVID-19 will offer any future protection from this virus.
  • Current antibody tests can NOT tell you if you are immune to COVID-19. That is because we do not know how long the antibodies will protect you from Coronavirus.
  • It is possible that this test can yield a false positive or negative result resulting in a false sense of confidence that a patient has protection against COVID-19.
  • In the future we will have a better sense of how relevant this test will be for determining Coronavirus immunity.
  • Antibody testing is available to patients and their parents.

How do I get tested?

  • All patients are required to have a telemedicine visit to discuss antigen and/or antibody testing prior to having the test ordered and the specimen collected.
  • Upon request parents of patients being tested will have an opportunity to schedule a nurse visit to have antibody labs drawn. The nurse visit will be billed to your insurance and results will be sent to your PCP.
  • We will have designated testing days/times available in order to streamline patient demand.
  • This test involves having blood drawn from a vein and results should be available within 1-3 days at Labcorp depending on patient demand.

Please watch the informative video from Dr. Suri  at the top of this page before requesting an appointment!

Please request all appointments for antibody testing via email at question@potomacpediatrics.com and allow 24 business hours for our team to contact you for scheduling.