There are different types of methods of testing to trace Covid-19.
The Real Time Reverse Transcription Polymerase Chain Reaction or RTPCR test is the Gold Standard frontline test for Covid-19.This came into effect after rapid antibody tests showed unreliable results.
Antibody Tests:-It is also known as serological tests,are used to find out the presence of virus in a body.
In this method of testing,blood samples are used to find antibodies.This process also detects the quantity of antibodies that are produced by the immune system.
It is a indirect method of testing as it cannot find virus but can determine if the immune system has encountered it.Anbodies can show up 9-28 days after infection has set in.By this time,an infected person can spread if not isolated.
RTPCR TEST:-It is a method of testing by taking nasal/throat swap from the patient.It involves extracting Ribonucleic Acid or RNA which is the genetic material of virus.If it shares the same genetic sequences as SARS-Cov-2 virus then it is deemed positive.This form of testing can turn negative only if the actual sample does not carry the virus or if it was not administered properly.
The RTPCR technology is fairly expensive method.It requires RNA extracting machine,a laboratory and trained technicians.A minimum of 30 samples are required to make it economically viable.
Sometimes,it can even take up to 4 hours to test for the presence of virus from one batch.The cost of chemical and importing elements required for the test is also expensive.One test can cost minimum INR 4500.On the other hand, antibody tests are inexpensive.It is administered portably from one site to another and provide quick answers.Rapid tests changes colour when particular molecule are detected.