By NewsDesk @infectiousdiseasenews
The Swedish Public Health Authority, or Folkhalsomyndigheten, updated its guidance for antibody detection for COVID-19 recently. Officials note that based on the knowledge available today, it is likely that so-called IgG antibodies to COVID-19 provide, in whole or in part, protection against a new infection with serious symptoms. In the updated guidance, the Public Health Authority assesses that a positive antibody test likely means it can provide protection for up to six months from the person receiving his test result. But with increased knowledge, this may be updated.
The new coronavirus has only been studied for a limited number of months and therefore it is reasonable to have an estimated time period of up to six months. There are no confirmed re-infections today. But in order to be able to use the test results, this requires that the tests have a very high performance that gives a reliable test result, says Karin Tegmark Wisell, Head of Department at the Public Health Authority.
A positive antibody test is assessed to result in a reduced risk of being infected and thus a reduced risk of passing the infection on to others. The assessment is subject to the assumption that the authorities continue to comply with the authorities’ general recommendations and restrictions, as well as the legislation that exists to reduce the spread of infection in society. For example, it is important to continue to wash your hands, to keep distance from people outside their usual social circle and to stay home if you feel ill.
We currently believe that a positive antibody test increases the possibility of interacting with, in particular, close relatives, which can be especially important for people over 70 years and people belonging to a risk group. They can also to a greater extent meet relatives who have antibodies even if they do not have them themselves. But you always have to make your own judgment based on the individual situation and take your own responsibility as an individual, says Karin Tegmark Wisell.
It can primarily be about spending time with close relatives such as family and friends – both indoors and outdoors. The restriction to refrain from larger social contexts remains.
The guidance for antibody detection at covid-19 is also updated with information on use at the group level and provides a recommendation on the necessary performance to provide reliable test results.