Antibody testing services – GPC advice

The General Pharmaceutical Council has published the following advice about antibody testing services.

A pharmacy is offering an antibody rapid test service. Is this allowed?

Antibody tests are used to detect antibodies to the COVID-19 virus to see if you have previously had the virus. Some pharmacies are offering a test within the pharmacy. Public Health England currently advises against the use of rapid point of care tests – where results can usually be obtained within 10 minutes – due to insufficient information about their accuracy and suitability for diagnosing COVID-19.

We do not expect pharmacies to be providing tests which do not adhere to guidance from the public health agencies in Great Britain. Where we have been made aware that a pharmacy is offering these tests we’ve told them to stop doing so.

Please let us know about any pharmacies providing tests that do not adhere to guidance from the MHRA or public health agencies by raising a concern. We will then consider what action to take. Please also report this to the MHRA.

We will keep our position under review in light of any changes to the situation, including any changes in guidance from the MHRA or public health agencies. We do not have the jurisdiction over and would not advise on the legality, safety or efficacy of particular types of tests or kit.