How it works
- Purchase your test online here
- Arrange your phlebotomy visit
- You will receive your home sample kit via express delivery (next working day delivery if ordered before 2pm)
- Register your kit using our online form
- Have your blood taken by a professional phlebotomist and label your blood tubes (labels are provided)
- Return your sample by using the pre-paid envelope provided (this can simply go in any post box)
- Receive your results by e mail within 1-2 days of your sample reaching our laboratory
What’s in the kit?
- 1x detailed instruction sheet to tell you how to easily register your kit with us
- Labels for your blood collection tube
- 1x biohazard bag
- 1x pre-paid return envelope
What does my antibody test result mean?
Receiving an overall result of “Positive” from our test confirms that you have either had a prior COVID-19 infection or received a COVID-19 vaccine and you have mounted an immune response against the virus that is detectable by our test. A positive result for either IgM or IgG gives an overall positive result.
An overall result of “Negative” means that any IgM or IgG antibodies to the SARS-CoV-2 S1 spike protein were not detected by our test. This could be because:
- You have not previously been infected or vaccinated against COVID-19
- You have been infected or vaccinated, but the antibodies you produced are below the detection limit of our test
- You have been infected but your immune system has produced antibodies that do not bind to the S1 spike protein in our test
Further test details:
Who is this suitable for?
Anyone who would like to know if they’ve previously had COVID-19 or would like to test their immune response after vaccination.
This is the ‘have you had it’ test. If you currently have symptoms of COVID-19, you should follow government guidelines (https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus).
What’s the advantage of this test?
Two different antibody types (IgG & IgM) are tested and reported separately
IgM antibodies are detectable earlier than IgG and can be an indicator of recent infection. Our tests measures both COVID-19 IgG and IgM antibodies and reports separate results for each, giving you more information about the nature of your immune response. Other tests only measure IgG or will report a combined IgG & IgM result.
Our test gives you a quantitative result & categorises your response
If you have a positive test result, this test will also tell you how strong your immune response to SARS-CoV-2 is, with antibody levels reported as low, medium, high or very high.
This will also be given a numerical value, which gives you a baseline measure so you can check in the future whether your levels have changed over time.
Antibodies that our test detects have been shown to protect against SARS-CoV-2 infection using a neutralising test
This test has also been validated against a SARS-CoV-2 neutralisation test, which determines whether the antibodies in your blood are able to stop the SARS-CoV-2 virus from entering and infecting cells. The antibody levels measured by our test correlated very strongly with virus neutralising activity, meaning they blocked the virus (original strain) from infecting cells.
Determines vaccine response
All current COVID-19 vaccines are designed to produce antibodies to the S1 Spike protein, which our test measures. You can use our test to determine your response to the vaccine and booster and to monitor your antibody levels over time.
How accurate is this test?
This test has been shown to detect 100% of severe hospitalised cases and 86.9% of 107 milder community cases, including asymptomatic people with a positive SARS-CoV-2 swab test, this is the test sensitivity. Most other antibody tests have not been validated in community cases of COVID-19, nor in asymptomatic people with a positive SARS-CoV-2 swab test.
For high or very high positives, the specificity of our test is 100%. This means for moderate to very high antibody positives, we are almost 100% certain they are not false positives. For moderate level positives, the specificity of our test is 99.5%. This means for moderate antibody positives, one in 200 tests could be a “false positive”. For low-level positives, the specificity of our test is 98.6%. This means for low antibody positive, 1.4 in 100 tests could be a “false positive”.
Note that in Prof Johnston’s view, a “false positive” is probably more likely to be showing cross-reactive protection from prior seasonal coronavirus exposure, rather than being a true “false positive”.
How quickly will I get my results?
Results will be delivered via email (usually by 6pm) within 2 working days of receipt of samples in VirTus’ laboratory (Camden, London).
Return your samples using the pre-paid envelope, using any Royal Mail post-box. Delivery should be next day, unless Royal Mail is experiencing delays.
Is this an approved test?
Yes, the home sampling kit and the COVID-19 S1 antibody test is fully CE marked (accredited), meaning that the products we use meet EU safety, health and environmental requirements and are approved for use within the European Economic Area (EEA).
Why would I choose this option instead of a finger-prick sample kit?
Some individuals prefer arranging a professional phlebotomist to take their blood sample, as they may find this option easier than taking the finger-prick sample at home.