Antibody Testing

I have a serendipitous story to share that developed just moments ago:

Yesterday I posted the story about my brother and the front page news story regarding his donations of face shields (PPE). If you haven’t already, you can read the article here:

One of the clinics he donated these shields to is True Health DPC in Silverton, OR. This is the clinic of Dr. Tomas Gigena who is mentioned the Statesman Journal newspaper article.

Today, I called True Health clinic because Kyle and I are working on donating meals to clinics and organizations that are on the front lines in this COVID-19 fight. I spoke with Amy, and while I was calling to buy them lunch…it quickly turned into something else entirely.

Amy asked if I was the sister mentioned in the article who had tested positive for COVID-19. Indeed I am. She then told me they are the only clinic in Oregon who is currently doing antibody testing! I had no idea that this was available yet! And because I have a positive COVID-19 nasal swab test, they are going to offer me the antibody blood test for FREE. If you want to get the antibody test without having a positive COVID-19 test, you can pay $169 for the test.

Amy was full of amazing information and I did my best to jot it down. Reminder, I’m not a doctor, so I am writing these to the best of my memory/understanding:

  • The blood draw test checks for 4 strands of SARS-COV including the disease COVID-19. They will test for antibodies on all four strands.
  • They are testing for “natural immunity” which means that I’ve had the disease, fought it, and now have the antibodies to keep it from coming back.
  • They are currently testing anyone who wants to be tested, but mostly it’s essential workers who are worried that they were sick and wonder if they should go back to working with the public.
  • Ready for this statistic??? 38% of the antibody tests they’ve done have been positive.

So, while I was calling to help them…they ended up helping me too! I will be going in tomorrow at 11am to have my blood drawn. Extra precautions will be taken since I have tested positive for COVID-19, but she promised they wouldn’t make me feel like a leper. 🙂

Don’t worry, I didn’t forget to order them lunch after all of that. We ordered meals for the office from their favorite restaurant in Silverton: Water Mountain Restaurant. The owner of Water Mountain Restaurant’s wife is currently quarantined in Mexico because she was traveling when the pandemic hit, and has been unable to get home. It feels really good to support people on the front lines, a local business, and a family who needs it right now!

Also of note: I reached out to the American Red Cross to ask about donating my plasma. There are multiple news stories about how the plasma of a person who has recovered from COVID-19 can save the lives of people currently fighting it. I was asked to fill out an application online and I will be contacted regarding my donation. It might be too soon since I’m only 77 hours at baseline health, but I want to begin donating as soon as I can. If you know of any contacts at the American Red Cross, or have any insight into when/where/how I can donate, please let me know!

Stay healthy and safe, my friends! XOXO, Jill

One thought on “Antibody Testing

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