CHARLOTTE – Novant Pediatrician offices are now offering one of the latest COVID tests developed by Abbott and aptly named Abbott Now Test. It gives rapid test results for patients that may be displaying COVID symptoms. Within only 15 minutes the test can deliver results. Administering the test to patients is similar to the standard COVID test; either a nasal or oral swab can be used. Being able to administer the test and get quick results is very important going into the flu and cold season. Determining if the symptoms are due to the COVID virus or another illness is ideal when determining if a child can return to normal activities or needs to quarantine for a suggested amount of time.
Abbott Now Test is available at all the Novant Pediatric offices. If your child is having symptoms, the first step is to make a call to your pediatrician. The test is done by appointment only, and the child must be displaying active symptoms of the COVID virus to have the test. If the child has been exposed or it has been determined that they could be carrying the virus asymptomatically, the standard COVID test is still being used. The results of the standard test have a two- to three-day waiting period. Novant is currently only using the Abbot Now Test to determine if a child with COVID symptoms has an active virus.
Quickly being able to determine if a child has an active virus is very valuable. This is especially important at a time where most students are scheduled to return to the classroom just as flu and cold season is ramping up. Using the test will allow the community to act as quickly as possible to help stop the continuing spread of the virus along with determining if the symptoms are related to another illness. The number of people testing positive is rising each day. Newly deployed tests like this one are able to help the community prepare for the upcoming winter season. During the start of winter, we normally see a spike in colds, cases of flu, and viruses. Being able to quickly determine if a patient actively has the virus or a serious illness also keeps the hospitals focused on caring for the sick and helps to keep the number of deaths down. Keeping the community safe and healthy is one of the number one priorities.
We had a wonderful opportunity to speak with Dr. Candice Nadia Castellino. She is currently a pediatrician at Novant Health Pediatrics in Mint Hill. They are currently using the test in their office. She is very pleased to be able to work with her patients to quickly determine if they are COVID positive or not. During our converastion, Dr. Castellino not only stressed how important it is to get the annual flu shot this year, but also that safe social distancing practice is more important than ever. As kids return to school, events, and join together, the virus is spreading. We all have to remember that the common cold, flu, and other viruses are still present. Using proper sanitation and social distancing practices is the best way to keep our community healthy and safe. These practices also help keep people out of hospitals and allow them to keep resources available to the ones that need it most.
Handling the challenges of the pandemic along with this unprecedented cold and flu season could really put a strain on families and the healthcare system. It is very important to make sure that you are taking care of your family and keep moving forward with the “new normal.” Making sure to wash your hands, wear your mask, stay at home if you are feeling sick, and limit interactions with people closer than six feet are ways help everyone from getting sick with any illness. When everyone does their part, it helps keep everyone safer and healthier. The Abbott Now Test is a new resource that has been added to ways that we can work together to help fight the spread of COVID. If your child is showing symptoms, make sure to reach out to your pediatric office for the test today.