Coronavirus News: At-home COVID-19 testing focus of new study

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- As state and federal leaders look for ways to make more testing available for COVID-19, a New York City doctor is helping to find out if it's possible to do it from the comfort of your own home.

Right now, most people have to go to a doctor's office or urgent care to get an antibody test for COVID-19, but Dr. Viral Patel of Radish Health is teaming up to find out if people can do it themselves.

"Those are the questions we're trying to answer," Dr. Patel said.

He's partnering with ProofPilot, a digital clinical trial startup, and Sanesco medical laboratory to launch a new study to see if people can manage taking the test themselves without a doctor present.

The test would normally be performed by a medical professional by pricking your finger for blood.

"How to go through cleaning their finger off, pricking their finger how to take the blood and putting it correctly in the sample tray," Dr. Patel said.

They're looking for 500 people in the New York City area who believe they've had COVID-19.

The researchers also want to know how peoples' behavior changes based on their results.

"How those results affect their anxiety level as well as their behavior so if they have positive results, are they less likely to social distance," Dr. Patel said.

Participants will be interviewed every week for eight weeks to determine how their behavior is affected.

The results from the study could help state and federal leaders increase access to home testing.

"It's a way to show potentially a path to be able to do these at home and to make sure we as a society are able to do this in mass safely, without changing behavior in a detrimental way," Dr. Patel said.

For information on how to participate, visit ProofPilot's website.
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