CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - At least one urgent care in Charlotte is now offering a COVID-19 antibody rapid test.
StarMed Family and Urgent Care in west Charlotte allows you to sign up to drive up, get your finger pricked, and get your test results in minutes.
Bill Mahoney was one of several people to pull up at StarMed Urgent care for a rapid test.
“I think it’s just good to know,” Mahoney said.
He let WBTV film him as it happened.
“People are obviously worried," StarMed Chief Medical Officer Arin Piramzadian said. "They’re sick. They want to find out if they can be exposed, if they can get someone else sick.”
Test supply from the government is low, which is why Piramzadiam says he ordered 500 of these rapid serological tests from private suppliers Pharmatec and Premier Biotech.
“It looks for something called IgG and IgM antibodies," Piramzadian said. "So that let’s you know if there’s a current infection, or if you’ve been infected in the past and recovered from it.”
According to the FDA, “the test has not been reviewed by the FDA and results from antibody testing should not be used as the sole basis to diagnose or exclude SARS- CoV-2 infection or to inform infection status.”
Piramzadian believes the FDA will give the official stamp of approval as more clinics and hospitals start using them across the country. He says right now clinics like his have been given the ability to market theses test kits under the “Policy for Diagnostic Testing of COVID-19 During a Public Health Crisis."
If you’re experiencing symptoms, Piramzadian says you should start at home.
“You go online, you get seen by one of my providers," Piramzadian said. "They discuss testing with you, they discuss risk factors, and then they set a time for you to come in and get tested.”
Piramzadian thinks these fast results could help to flatten the curve.
“We know that there’s such a limited supply of the regular swabs that most people are not being tested," he said. "Most people are not being able to know yes or no if they’re infected. Instead 15 to 20 percent of asymptomatic patients who don’t have any complaints are getting other people sick.”