Surveillance Testing at OLP

Introduction to Testing

The FDA has identified two different intended uses of testing for COVID-19 infection, testing of “symptomatic” persons, those who believe they may have COVID-19 due to symptoms they are experiencing or who may have been exposed to infected persons, and testing of “asymptomatic” persons, those who are not experiencing any symptoms of COVID-19 nor have reason to suspect they have been infected.

Most of the diagnostic tests being performed today are under the intended use category of symptomatic testing. In contrast, the FDA does not regulate surveillance tests, such as that offered by TestTheTeam, which do not give individual results, but rather are used to survey “groups or teams” of asymptomatic persons. BioSpyder is an acceptable SARS-CoV-2 test to be used for surveillance testing on a school site, according to the CDPH and California COVID-19 Testing Task Force

Organizations who perform COVID-19 testing use different testing technologies. Largely these tests are either Rapid Antigen Tests, which generally give a result within 30-minutes, and molecular testing which need to be run in a laboratory. RT-PCR, often referred to as the gold standard, is a molecular test and generally takes about 12-hours lab and prep-time to run. Molecular tests are generally significantly more specific and sensitive than Rapid Tests and most molecular tests have a sensitivity and specificity of ≥95%. TestTheTeam uses a molecular test developed by BioSpyder. Most molecular tests use nasal swabs for sampling whereas TestTheTeam uses saliva captured in mouthwash. 

BioSpyder Testing at OLP

All community members will be asked to participate in the molecular based saliva test, which includes a 10 second gargle with a Listerine based mouthwash. They will do this during their Block A class every two weeks. Testing will be conducted in groups of 4, not individually. Pool Testing is a type of surveillance testing recommended by CDPH and the California COVID-19 Testing Task Force for school communities with a positivity rate below 5%. OLP is well below that threshold. No personal information will be shared with BioSpyder Technologies regarding individuals comprising the groups of 4. All of the student and employee information will remain confidential with the OLP Testing Team. 

Results will come back for the entire group as either “detected” or “not detected.” If a group has a result of “detected” all members of the group will be offered a Nasal COVID-19 PCR test at OLP through our partnership with the UCSD Excite Lab. Results will be returned within 24 hours regarding a Positive/Negative COVID-19 PCR individual test. Students can also opt to be directly given a COVID-19 PCR test with their primary health-care provider.  

Individuals who are even mildly symptomatic should not be on campus. Frequently, a common cold or runny nose is an early sign of COVID-19 and is misappropriated as allergies. This test is highly sensitive and will pick-up the COVID-19 virus at its earliest stages of infection. 

Individuals should not eat or drink 30 minutes prior to testing. The test will not commence until 30 minutes after Block A has begun. Individuals should not have had a Positive COVID-19 test within 90 days of testing. If so, those individuals should opt-out of taking the test. Taking the saliva test will return a “Detected” result for the group, skewing the results.