CLOSE The secret to fighting COVID-19 could be in recovered patients. Here’s how antibodies could lead to a treatment for those fighting coronavirus. USA TODAYCoronavirus antibody testing in the U.S. is starting to ramp up as government officials discuss when they can reopen communities and health experts survey hotspots.From coast to coast, epidemiologists are using some of the many antibody tests that have entered the market recently to determine how much COVID-19 has spread. The importance of these tests are not lost on Americans, who are itching to go back to work, see loved ones and find out if they have been infected with the virus. Many have questions about where to find antibody tests, how they work and if they can even be trusted. There aren’t easy answers. With little public data about the tests’ accuracy, experts question whether they will give people false reassurances by indicating they have immunity to the disease.What is an antibody test?Testing to see if people have antibodies in their blood isn’t the same as testing to see if they are infected with the coronavirus that causes COVID-19. An antibody test can determine if someone has been infected and recovered, whereas a molecular test – a “PCR” test that usually uses a nose or throat swab – shows whether that person was infected

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