More than 1,000 Tayside healthcare staff are being given antibody tests to check if they have previously contracted Covid-19.
The NHS workers flocked to take part in the research study, named MATCH, after local microbiology and blood science teams requested blood donations.
Antibody tests are not currently being used for public testing in Scotland but are used to detect antibodies to the virus to see if an individual has previously had the virus.
It works by taking a blood sample and testing for the presence of antibodies to see if an immune response to the virus has been developed.
They differ to virus swab tests, which determine if someone currently has the virus.
There is no strong evidence yet to suggest that those who have had the virus develop long-lasting immunity which would prevent them from getting the virus again.
Professor of respiratory research, James Chalmers said: “While the results of an antibody test will not allow people to make any changes to their behaviour, such as easing social distancing measures, there’s clear value in knowing whether NHS workers have had the virus, and in collecting data on the test results.
“We had over 1,000 staff offering to take part in the trial within a few hours of the call for volunteers. The first results have been released to staff and the feedback has been really positive. Staff really appreciate having access to this test.”
The tests will be validated to ensure performance is consistent with targets set out by UK government. The validation work will be done in conjunction with other laboratories across NHS Scotland.
Support The Courier today.
The Courier is committed to delivering quality content to our communities and right now that’s more important than ever — which is why our key content is free. However, you can support us and access premium content by subscribing to The Courier from just £5.99 a month. Because Local Matters.