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Independent hospital north of Dayton rolls out COVID-19 antibody testing to public

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  • Written By: Dayton Business Journal

An independent hospital north of Dayton will begin offering Covid-19 antibody testing to the public this week, providing another option for area residents to learn whether they had a past infection of the novel coronavirus.

Beginning May 26, walk-in antibody testing for Covid-19 will be available at Wayne HealthCare's outpatient lab. No appointment is necessary, and a physician's order is not required.

The test is performed on a patient's blood specimen and can detect the IgG antibody to SARS-CoV2 — a protein produced in the latter stages of illness which indicates a person was likely previously infected with the virus that causes Covid-19.

"IgG antibodies are those antibodies that the body produces in the latter stages of an infection and tend to provide long-term immunity against a virus," said Matt Kiehl, administrative director of laboratory services for Wayne HealthCare, in a release. "This test will tell us if you have these antibodies."

The test is not intended to determine whether a patient has a current infection, but rather for individuals who feel well and do not have symptoms but suspect they may have recovered from a Covid-19 infection earlier this year.

Testing positive for the antibody does not necessarily imply immunity from Covid-19. Individuals should continue to observe federal, state and local public health guidance.

Those who wish to undergo testing should come to Wayne HealthCare's outpatient lab at 835 Sweitzer St. in Greenville. The lab is open 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 7 a.m. to noon on Saturday. Everyone who enters the hospital must pass a mandatory health screening.

The test costs $65, and payment is due via credit card at the time of service. Results typically take between two and four days to process and will be mailed to the patient's home address.

In early May, Premier Health and the University of Dayton began offering Covid-19 IgG antibody testing to the public at the UD Arena drive-through specimen collection site.

Other area businesses — like drug testing service ARCpoint Labs in Tipp City — have begun offering Covid-19 antibody tests as well.

Patients who have recovered from Covid-19 could help accelerate an investigational treatment by donating plasma to local blood banks, like the Community Blood Center. The treatment, convalescent plasma therapy, has in the past been successfully used to treat various infectious diseases. Click here for more.

Wayne HealthCare, based in Greenville, also launched the first drive-through Covid-19 testing site in Darke County in April. The site is located outside the hospital's main entrance.