Viral tests, which look for parts of the virus itself, are "diagnostic" – finding SARS-CoV-2 means that the person has COVID-19. But are they as accurate? There are 2 types of diagnostic tests available at the moment and they detect the virus responsible for COVID-19. Updated 1258 GMT (2058 HKT) April 29, 2020 . The statement from the CDC said that an antibody test – a test for a past infection – for Covid-19 could pick up antibodies for other types of coronaviruses, such as a cold. The 3 main types of COVID-19 tests: nucleic acid, antigen, and serological. Dubbed as the gold standard of COVID-19 tests, molecular tests like PCR (polymerase chain reaction) detect the genetic material or RNA of SARS-CoV-2 in the mucus sample from the nose or throat, where the respiratory virus is most likely to be found. ANTIBODY TEST. Taiwan McCall, left, useless a nasal swab to test James Reese for COVID-19 in the Harlem section of New York, Monday, April 20, 2020. From: Department of Health and Social Care. So much about testing for COVID-19 is confusing--from the types and number of tests available to incomplete information and changing options. Understanding the current choices can help you make an informed decision about how to proceed if you want to be tested. Read More: The Master Guide to COVID-19 Testing for Travelers But Hawaii has laid out exactly what it requires from tests. Published 14 July 2020 Last updated 3 August 2020 — see all updates. Authors. Read on to learn about the types of rapid tests available, how they work, what’s ahead in rapid testing, and where to find a rapid test near you. Knowing that research shows sputum sample COVID-19 tests are among the most accurate is further encouragement to consider that option if you need to get tested. So let’s back up a bit. What to know about the three main types of coronavirus tests. Nucleic acid and antigen tests are used to diagnose active infection. What to make of different types of COVID-19 tests. A diagnostic test can show if you have an active coronavirus infection and should take steps to quarantine or isolate yourself from others. The test kit is called the CDC 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) Real-Time Reverse Transcriptase (RT)–PCR Diagnostic Panel.. On February 3, 2020, CDC submitted an EUA package to expedite FDA-permitted use of the CDC diagnostic panel in the United States. As with everything related to the novel coronavirus, what we know about testing for COVID-19 is constantly changing. Tests for viral presence are used to diagnose individual cases and to allow public health authorities to trace and contain outbreaks. When the immune system is exposed to COVID-19, it produces IgG antibodies to fight the virus. COVID-19 testing involves analyzing samples to assess the current or past presence of SARS-CoV-2.The two main branches detect either the presence of the virus or of antibodies produced in response to infection. By Eric Levenson and Arman Azad, CNN. There are two very different ways in which this is done. If you test negative, you probably were not infected at the time your sample was collected. A PCR test can confirm a diagnosis of COVID-19 if it identifies two specific SARS-CoV-2 genes. It is considered the most accurate and sensitive test for identifying an active infection. Currently, there are three different types of tests to determine whether someone has COVID-19 or has previously been infected. Different types of tests for COVID-19 are in the pipeline Many organisations, universities and companies are currently working on developing new tests for the virus causing COVID-19. Craig Lockwood, Lucy Crawford. 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