George E. Weems Memorial Hospital will conduct a second COVID-19 Abbott antibody testing event on Wednesday, May 27 from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.

This week’s free testing event will focus on area individuals who work in the healthcare, city or county, childcare industry or real estate and hospitality. Additionally, all senior citizens are invited also.

Like the first event last week, the May 26 testing event will occur at the hospital on Avenue G in Apalachicola. Hospital staff will conduct the antibody test on site which will consist of drawing a blood sample from your arm.

To be eligible for this unique opportunity for free testing, you must be a resident or employee of Franklin County and 18 years or older.

In addition to this event, the antibody tests will continue to be offered at both clinics in Apalachicola and Carrabelle. Individuals can call either the East Clinic at 697-2345 and/or West Clinic at 653-1525 to schedule an appointment for testing.

The Abbott SARS-CoV-2 IgG antibody test, approved by the FDA, is designed to detect whether you have particular antibodies in your blood, which will indicate if you have previously been exposed to the novel coronavirus. It will Not tell you if you have the virus that causes COVID-19.

According to health officials, the antibody test requires a blood sample instead of a nasal swab because antibodies exist in your blood, not in saliva. The swab sample is used to detect the virus itself, because the virus lives in your respiratory tract and nasal passages. Since antibodies reside in your bloodstream and not in your nasal passages, a blood sample is required

Blood samples of test recipients will be sent overnight to LabCorp Diagnostics. It is expected test results will be available within two to three days. Results will be available through the LabCorp portal or through the Weems Medical Clinic.

If you have any questions, please call Susie Buskirk, Weems Medical Centers practice manager at 653-1525 ext. 106.