Frequently asked questions
How to get an antibody test
You can request a COVID-19 antibody test from our website.
Will I get my result instantly?
No, you’ll need to collect your sample and then send it back to the lab for processing. Once the lab has your sample, you’ll usually have your result within 2-3 working days.
Who can get a COVID-19 antibody test?
- Test kits are suitable for adults aged 18 and over only
- Our test kits are for personal use only, and must not be ordered for anyone else
- You will be limited to one kit per person, per order
Is there anyone who shouldn’t take the test?
Antibody results might be affected if:
- You’ve had a recent plasma infusion (receiving the liquid part of the body's blood)
- You’re immunocompromised (your immune system's defences are low due to certain medication or medical conditions).
When will my COVID-19 antibody blood sampling kit arrive?
Your sampling kit should arrive within 2-3 working days of your order being approved by our clinicians.
What does the kit come with?
The antibody test kit comes with:
Instructions for use
Patient information sheet
Postage paid envelope that can be put in any post box
Sample collection tube
Sample collection tube case
Sample collection tube label
When should I take my test?
You should take the test on the same day that you’re able to post it back to the lab. This will reduce the risk of your blood sample deteriorating or getting damaged.
If you’re testing after the COVID-19 vaccine, you should leave it at least 14 days after each dose to test for antibodies.
How do I send my sample back to the lab?
Your kit will come with packaging and prepaid postage, so you can send your sample back to our partner lab.
How will I receive my COVID-19 antibody results?
Once the lab has received your sample, it usually takes 2-3 working days for them to process your results.
The lab will send your results back to us and we’ll send you an email (and text if you have opted in to receive SMS updates) to let you know that your results are ready. You’ll need to log into your account and your results will be in your Patient Record. You’ll also be able to access a downloadable certificate of your results.
Should I take this test even if I didn't have COVID-19 symptoms?
You can take the antibody test whether you have had symptoms or not.
A positive result on an antibody test doesn’t confirm immunity. You should follow government guidance on social distancing and self-isolation if you or someone in your household/bubble develops symptoms.
What happens if I test negative for COVID-19 antibodies?
Testing negative for COVID-19 antibodies means that there were either no antibodies or the levels were too low to be of any significance.
Out of 1000 people with antibodies, 2 will test negative even though they’re positive. This is called a false negative. This can be due to low levels of antibodies in your body.
What happens if I test positive for COVID-19 antibodies?
If your result is positive, this means COVID-19 antibodies were detected in your sample. This means your body has produced a response to COVID-19, either from having the virus or the COVID-19 vaccine.
Out of 1000 people tested, 12 will get a positive result when they’re actually negative. This is called a false positive and it can happen when the test detects antibodies of similar viruses in the sample.
What does my ‘antibody level’ mean?
Your antibody level is the number of antibodies in your blood. If you test positive this can be anything from 0.8-2500+.
The level of antibodies can suggest your body’s response to either the virus or vaccine. As COVID-19 is still a fairly new virus, we don’t know yet what the significance of the level’s value or whether this might change with time and how long you might have this immune response.
If I have a positive result for antibodies, am I immune from COVID-19?
No, unfortunately testing positive for antibodies doesn’t mean you’re immune from COVID-19.
A positive result for antibodies:
- Means you have been exposed to COVID-19 in the past or had the COVID-19 vaccine
- Doesn’t mean you’re 100% immune
- Doesn’t mean you can’t spread the virus to other people
- If you test positive for antibodies you still need to follow social distancing guidelines and the restrictions in your local area.
How soon after the vaccine can I take an antibody test?
From 14 days after each dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.
Can I get a copy of my antibody results?
Yes, when you get your results, you’ll be able to download a copy of these from your Patient Record.