COVID-19 FAQs

Coronavirus Testing at ARCpoint Labs

New information is coming out every day, regarding COVID-19. We are doing our best to stay on top of it, interpret it, and get it back out to you in a meaningful way. Please be sure to check back in for the most up-to-date information.

Our COVID-19 testing is available at select locations.

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Standard (PCR)  Viral Test

Who is this PCR Viral test for?

Anyone who wants to know if they currently have COVID-19, whether or not they have symptoms.

How is this test performed?

By taking a swab of respiratory fluid (either from the nasal cavity or mouth).

Can I use this test for workplace safety?

Yes. We have designed a testing protocol that aligns with current CDC guidelines for workplace testing. https://www.arcpointlabs.com/return-to-work/

Is fasting required for this test?

No, fasting is not required for this test.

Is this test FDA Approved?

No, but all PCR viral tests collected at ARCpoint Labs locations have been given Emergency Use Authorization through the FDA, which is the highest level of clearance the FDA can grant during the public health emergency.

What do positive and negative results mean?

If you have a positive test result, it is very likely that you have COVID-19.   We strongly recommend you review your results with your healthcare provider so that he/she can work with you to determine your best care based on the test results, along with other factors of your medical history, including (but not limited to) any previous symptoms, possible exposure to COVID-19, and the location of places you have recently traveled.

A negative test result means the virus that causes COVID-19 was not detected in your sample. 

How long will I have to wait for my results?

Depending on what day of the week your sample is collected, you should receive your results within 2-4 days.

Rapid (Antigen) Viral Test

Who is this test for?

Anyone who may have been potentially exposed or believes they may currently have COVID-19, whether or not they have symptoms.

How is this test performed?

By taking a swab of respiratory fluid from the nasal cavity.

Can I use this test for travel, surgery, or workplace safety?

This test can be used for random or scheduled testing in workplaces. [Return to Work Guide Info]. This test may be appropriate for certain kinds of travel or pre-surgical clearance. Check with your specific destination or performing hospital first to be sure.

Is this test FDA Approved?

No, but the Sofia 2 Device, which makes antigen testing possible, has been given Emergency Use Authorization through the FDA, which is the highest level of clearance the FDA can grant during the public health emergency.

What do positive and negative results mean?

A positive result means you currently have COVID-19. A negative result means you are not currently infected with COVID-19.

How is this different than a PCR or NAAT test for COVID-19?

This test looks for Antigens, a maker of the virus itself. This makes it extremely unlikely to give false-positive results, but slightly more likely to give false-negative ones when compared to a PCR test.

How long will I have to wait for my results?

Depending on how your specific ARCpoint location operates and demand at the time your sample is collected, you may receive your results in 24 hours or less.


COVID-19 ANTIBODY IgG/IgM *or* COVID-19 IgG Test

Who is the COVID-19 antibody test for?

This test is best for people who believe they’ve been exposed to COVID-19 or had symptoms in the past (fever, cough, shortness of breath, etc.). You must be free of symptoms for at least 7 days before receiving the test. The test is intended to indicate the presence of COVID-19 antibodies, in order to better inform an individual’s personal decisions about returning to work in a high-risk or customer-facing profession.

Does the antibody test diagnose the COVID-19 RNA virus?

NO! This test screens for antibodies, which are a specialized type of immune cell your body produces in response to COVID-19. 

 

What is a COVID-19 antibody test?

The COVID-19 Antibody Test is a blood test that is designed to detect immune proteins called antibodies, which may indicate that your body has been exposed to COVID-19 (also known as coronavirus or SARS-CoV-2).

How are antibodies developed and what is their purpose?

When a virus or foreign antigen enters your body, your immune system typically responds by producing specific proteins called antibodies to help fight off the virus. Antibodies can remain in your body for a period of time, potentially protecting you from reinfection in the future. Because the SARS-CoV-2 virus is so new, it is unclear how strong the immune response might be, or how long the antibodies may last in your body.

 

What’s the point of this test?

The results of this test may help identify people who have had an immune response to COVID-19. The testing data will be shared with the health department and CDC, in an effort to assist experts in determining the best response to the pandemic, as well as how to continue protecting the public’s health. 

What is the process for getting a COVID-19 lab-based antibody test?

  1. Find an ARCpoint Labs location that is offering COVID-19 antibody testing at https://www.arcpointlabs.com/find-your-location/ 
  2. Schedule your appointment 
  3. Come in to have your blood drawn at the ARCpoint Labs location
  4. ARCpoint Labs will collect the specimen and send it to one of our  third-party lab partners certified by CLIA to perform high complexity testing
  5. The lab partner will process your test in their facility, following all necessary protocols
  6. You should receive your results in 3-5 business days (wait times might be slightly longer due to high demand)
  7. Consult with your primary care physician or other licensed medical professional for guidance on how to interpret your results

 

Can this test be performed if I have COVID-19 symptoms?

No.  You must be asymptomatic for at least seven days before taking an antibody test.  Testing on symptomatic individuals may lead to unreliable results.

How long will I have to wait for my results?

Most lab-based antibody test results will be securely emailed within 3-5 business days after our blood draw. Due to increased demand, turnaround times may vary. We recommend consulting your Primary Care Physician (PCP) or other licensed medical professional to interpret your results.

What are the potential risks of the test?

  • Possible discomfort or other complications that can happen during sample collection. 
  • Possible incorrect test result (see below for more information). 

What are the potential benefits of the test?

  • The results, along with other information, can help your healthcare provider make informed recommendations about your care. 
  • The results of this test may help limit the spread of COVID-19 to your family and others in your community. 

If I test positive, what does that mean?

If you have a positive test result, it is likely you have been exposed to COVID-19 and that you have developed an antibody response to the virus. We strongly recommend you review your results with your healthcare provider so that he/she can work with you to determine your best care based on the test results, along with other factors of your medical history, including (but not limited to) any previous symptoms, possible exposure to COVID-19, and the location of places you have recently traveled. There is a chance this test can give a false positive result. Again, iIt is important that you work with your healthcare provider to help you understand the next steps you should take.

 

What does it mean if I have a negative test result?

A negative test result means antibodies for the virus that causes COVID-19 were not found in your sample. However, it is possible for this test to give a false negative in some people with COVID-19 infection. A negative result may occur for several reasons, such as if you are tested early in your illness and your body hasn’t had time to produce antibodies to infection. If this is the case, your healthcare provider will consider the test result together with all other aspects of your medical history (such as symptoms, possible exposures, and geographical location of places you have recently traveled) in deciding how to care for you. It is important that you work with your healthcare provider to help you understand the next steps you should take.

 

Is this antibody test FDA-approved?

The test used by ARCpoint Labs has not been reviewed or approved by the FDA. ARCpoint Labs does the phlebotomy pull (or blood draw), then sends the sample off to a high-complexity lab for testing and review by a physician. We are providing these tests based upon the FDA’s Policy for Coronavirus Disease-2019 Tests During the Public Health Emergency.

 

Does the FDA require test providers to give any additional information with this test?

Yes. The FDA currently requires the following disclaimers be provided with all results:

  • This test has not been reviewed by the FDA.
  • Negative results do not preclude acute SARS-CoV-2 infection. If acute infection is suspected, direct testing for SARS-CoV-2 is necessary.
  • Results from antibody testing should not be used to diagnose or exclude acute SARS-CoV-2 infection.
  • Positive results may be due to past or present infection with non-SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus strains, such as coronavirus HKU1, NL63, OC43, or 229E.

What is the clinical sensitivity and specificity for this test?

ARCpoint Labs partners with several test manufacturers and high complexity labs to provide these antibody tests to the consumer. Please contact your ARCpoint Labs location for specific information about the test they are offering.

Is this the test where they insert a swab up my nose?

No. This test uses a venipuncture (blood draw) to help find out if you have antibodies to the virus that causes COVID-19. This is NOT a test for the presence of the COVID-19 virus.

Is fasting required for this test?

No, fasting is not required for this test.

Are there any medications or conditions that could impact the results of this test?

If you are severely immunocompromised, on immune suppressing prescription medication, or taking long-term inhaled corticosteroids, you may not be able to form antibodies in a predictable way, making the results of this test less reliable.


GENERAL COVID-19 QUESTIONS

Do I need to see my doctor for a referral before I get any of these COVID-19 tests done?

No. You can make an appointment for this test without a referral from your doctor.

Will my insurance cover these tests?

We currently do not accept insurance.  We are able to provide you with the CPT code and receipt for the COVID-19 test to submit to your insurance company for possible reimbursement. All insurance companies vary, and you will need to reach out to them about your potential reimbursement. We are able to accept most major credit cards, debit cards and cash. In some locations we can also accept Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) and Flexible Spending accounts (FSAs). (check with your local ARCpoint Labs for payment options)

What are the potential benefits of these tests?

  • The results, along with other information, can help your healthcare provider make informed recommendations about your care. 
  • The results of this test may help limit the spread of COVID-19 to your family and others in your community.

If you have additional questions, please contact your local ARCpoint Labs.

We are closely following recommendations from the CDC and FDA to ensure the safety of all customers and staff and to bring you the most up-to-date information.

For additional information:

FDA Website       CDC Website

Our COVID-19 antibody testing is  offered at select locations. 

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