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Old 6th July 2020, 06:32 AM   #249
The Clarity Is Devastating
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Betwixt
Posts: 18,392
Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger View Post
The only reason to test antibodies is in a prevalence study.

The role of antibody tests in the statistics reporting is confusing to me right now. MA has been reporting the results of thousands of antibody tests a week, but there's nothing in the public guidelines, the instructions about who should get tested or what to do if you want to get tested, that even mentions the possibility of getting an antibody test. Maybe they are being used only for prevalence studies.

The strange thing, though, is that positive antibody tests are being classified as "probable cases" and as these are discovered, they're being reported as equivalent to new cases in the day to day numbers. In other words, each day there are "newly reported confirmed cases" (111, yesterday) from PCR testing and "newly reported probable cases" (25, yesterday) from antibody testing, and those are added together as 136 "newly reported cases today." And that's the number that data aggregator sites are using for the number of "new cases" each day in MA. Those time-shifted numbers could become very misleading as time goes on.

Given the advice to still avoid exposure to COVID is the same regardless, there is no reason for a further diagnostic work up.

Yeah, exactly. I self-quarantined as if my test result had been positive anyhow. (Why not, it's not like I was feeling up to going out.) The only difference is, if my test had been positive, my wife would have also been quarantined and tested as a recent contact of mine. She had no symptoms at that point (or since), and went to work. All water under the bridge now, in any case.

Not sure if anyone would follow you up when contact tracing.

I think MA has contact tracing going, so if my test had been positive there would have been follow up. It would have been easy enough, in my case.
A zÝmbie once bit my sister...
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