EDINBURG, Texas (KVEO) — The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley announced COVID-19 antibody testing will be provided by UT Health RGV.

The university says this is the third component of initiatives to help the Rio Grande Valley fight the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, previously providing drive-thru testing and contact tracing operations.

According to the release, the antibody test shows if an individual has been previously infected with COVID-19. Patients can be tested after they have tested positive for COVID-19.

Antibodies are proteins that help fight off infections and usually provide protection against getting that disease again, known as immunity.  

To get tested, you can make an appointment by calling the Patient Communications Center at 1-833-UTRGVMD (887-4863).

The testing sites will be located at the following locations:

  • UT Health RGV Multispecialty, 2106 Treasure Hills Blvd., Harlingen 78550, (956) 296-1519 
  • UT Health RGV/Knapp Family Health Center, 2810 W. Expressway 83, Mercedes 78570, (956) 296-1831 
  • UT Health RGV Primary and Urgent Care, 3804 S. Jackson Road, Ste. #2, Edinburg 78539, (956) 296-3021   

The release adds this is a test done via a blood sample and that results will be available 24 to 36 hours, depending on the number of samples the clinic receives.

“We are using the Abbott Alinity I platform to perform COVID19 IgG antibody testing. The test takes about 20 minutes to execute, and we have the capacity to run 200 samples an hour, or 2000 samples per day,” said Dr. John Thomas, UTRGV associate professor of biology and director of COVID-19 operations at the UT Health RGV Clinical Lab.

It is also mentioned that COVID-19 testing remains at four UT Health RGV drive-thru testing sites. Appointments can also be made by calling the Patient Communications Center at 1-833-UTRGVMD (887-4863).

The release emphasizes that an antibody test does not replace a test for COVID-19.