LabCorp Expands Reach of COVID-19 Antibody Test
A LabCorp blood test that helps identify individuals who’ve been exposed to the COVID-19 coronavirus is now broadly available.
The Burlington-based life science company, which originally targeted the antibody blood analysis to healthcare workers, now offers it to anyone recommended for testing by a doctor or healthcare provider. And there are no upfront out-of-pocket costs.
LabCorp said patients can take the test at tens of thousands of doctors’ offices around the country or at nearly 2,000 LabCorp patient service centers -- including more than 100 LabCorp at Walgreens locations.
Blood samples are sent to the company for analysis and healthcare providers get results in one to three days. The information also is available to patients electronically through the LabCorp Patient mobile app.
“We are bringing the full force of LabCorp’s science and testing capabilities to serve individuals across the U.S., whether they had the virus or believe they have the virus,” said LabCorp President and CEO Adam Schechter.
The test detects the presence of antibodies to SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. The company said its blood analysis should not be the only basis for determining whether someone has been exposed to the coronavirus, however.
While the U.S. Food and Drug Administration hasn’t officially approved the antibody test, it has okayed its use under Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) guidelines that were issued on March 16. This allows the agency to sign off on unapproved medical products that diagnose, treat or prevent serious or life-threating diseases during a health crisis.
LabCorp said it currently can perform more than 50,000 antibody tests per day. The company estimates that it will increase that number to 200,000 per day by mid-May as the FDA signs off on more testing platforms. Health experts have identified additional testing capacity as crucial to rebooting the nation’s economy.
LabCorp, founded a half century ago in Burlington, is an international life science powerhouse. It operates one of the largest clinical laboratory networks in the world and reported revenue of more than $11.5 billion in 2019. The company has around 65,000 employees.