LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) – Right now the likelihood of getting a COVID-19 test is much high than when the virus first started to show up in the United States.
For those who think they may have already had it there is still a way to test for it.
The state of Nebraska tested more than 22,000 people last week alone for COVID-19. For those who may have missed when they had it a simple blood test can finally give you answers.
We spoke with a man who requested to remain anonymous. He says back in March he felt ill but his symptoms did not line up with the regular flu.
“Body aches from head to shoulders and kind of some nauseousness a pit in my stomach and I was functional. I wasn’t bedridden like a lot of people are with the flu,” said the man.
Now, months later his suspicions were confirmed with an antibody test. A blood test that was done by his regular physician.
“Go get tested you’d be surprised how many folks I’ve talked to just recently and they’re starting to look back and say I had something that wasn’t the flu back in February,” said the man.
The man says his COVID-19 symptoms were mild compared to cases he had seen on TV and how he thought COVID-19 might feel.
This is why he is encouraging others to get the antibody test to potentially help through plasma donations.
The Red Cross is looking for those who have the antibodies for a potential treatment for COVID-19.
“We have reason to believe antibodies normally last years at least from the previous version of this known as SARS,” said Dr. Jed Gorlin with the Nebraska Community Blood Bank. “We’re not at all worried that these antibodies are going to disappear in the next month or so.”
The Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department says as of right now it’s not tracking those antibody tests.
However, it is following along with UNMC to see how those with antibodies are recovering.
The man says his doctors do say there is still a chance he could get COVID-19 again.
“It doesn’t mean that I walk around recklessly,” said the man. “I’m wearing a mask, there’s still a chance I could catch it again. They’re not 100 percent sure he thinks I’ll be okay for two to three months.”
It’s unclear the brand of antibody test this man had but others have had an accuracy rate of about 98 percent.