INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – New research out of South Korea suggests if a patient tests positive for the coronavirus after they’re no longer feeling sick, it’s likely they won’t infect others.
An article published by Fortune said people who test positive after they’re better are shedding non-infectious or dead virus particles. These patients are now being called re-positive.
Korean Centers for Disease Control and Prevention studied 285 COVID-19 survivors, none of which were found to have spread any lingering infection.
This changes the way health officials in South Korea view people who have recovered from the illness.
They will no longer be considered infectious or have to test negative for the virus before they go back to work or school. As soon as they have recovered from their illness and finished their period of isolation, they are allowed to return to normal activities.
Researchers said tests for the coronavirus’ nucleic acid can’t tell the difference between dead and live virus particles. This could potentially give the wrong impression that someone who tests positive is still infectious.
Researchers say some patients have tested positive a second time 82 days after first becoming infected and in nearly every case where a blood test was taken, people had developed antibodies against the virus.