HOUSTON — When it comes to testing for COVID-19, the VERIFY team gets all sorts of questions about detection, results and what they really mean. Houston Health Authority Dr. David Persse helped verify the following claims.
CLAIM: If you had the virus and get it again, that means it’s a new strain.
FALSE. “We do have reason to believe that people can become re-infected with the same strain. It appears it will take several months in between. But we do have evidence that people can be infected again with the same strain,” Dr. Persse said.
CLAIM: If someone has the virus but is not showing any symptoms, that means they are not contagious.
FALSE. “If someone is infected with COVID-19 and not having symptoms, they are still capable of spreading the virus,” Dr. Persse said.
CLAIM: COVID-19 can be detected through a blood test.
TRUE. “True,” Persse said.
CLAIM: If you have had the flu shot this season, then you will indeed test positive for COVID-19.
FALSE. “The flu shot will not cause you to test positive for COVID-19. Keep in mind, influenza and coronavirus are two completely separate families of viruses, and there will be no confusion during testing,” Dr. Persse said.
CLAIM: If you have Type O blood, you will not test positive for COVID-19.
FALSE. “There was concern that Type O blood was protective and that type A blood put people at greater risk. The current belief is that that is not accurate and that there is no advantage or disadvantage of one blood type over the other,” Dr. Persse said.