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Important Information on the Use of Serological (Antibody) Tests for COVID-19 – Letter to Healthcare Providers

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommends that healthcare providers continue to use serological tests intended to detect antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 to help identify people who may have been exposed to the SARS-CoV-2 virus or have recovered from the COVID-19 infection. Healthcare providers should also be aware of the limitations of these tests and the risks to patients and the community if the test results are used as the sole basis to diagnose COVID-19.


The FDA is not aware of an antibody test that has been validated for diagnosis of SARS-CoV-2 infection. While the FDA remains open to receiving submissions for these tests for such uses, based on the underlying scientific principles of antibody tests, the FDA does not expect that an antibody test can be shown to definitively diagnose or exclude SARS-CoV-2 infection.

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