The Laboratory Diagnosis of COVID-19— Frequently-Asked Questions

Ferric C Fang, Samia N Naccache, Alexander L Greninger
Clinical Infectious Diseases: An Official Publication of the Infectious Diseases Society of America 2020 June 8
Diagnostic testing has played and will continue to play a major role in the COVID-19 pandemic. The ability to detect the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus in respiratory secretions is essential to determine when an individual is infected and potentially infectious to others. Viral detection is used for the identification, management and isolation of individual patients. Viral detection is also used to determine when the virus has entered a community and how rapidly it is spreading. As communities attempt to re-open following periods of shutdown, the detection of both SARS-CoV-2 and specific antibodies recognizing the virus will become increasingly important as a means to assess infection and immunity in individuals and communities. Here we discuss questions commonly asked by clinicians about COVID-19 diagnostic testing.

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