Advancing Efficient and Timely Community Access to SARS-CoV-2 Serology Testing in Europe: a Multi-stakeholder Consensus
Background: Currently there is no clear consensus on the use, value, benefits, and impact of serology testing as part of a comprehensive SARS-CoV-2 testing strategy. The lack of clarity on the use of this strategy in policies and guidelines may have serious implications on the efforts to curb the pandemic. The aim of this paper is to elaborate an experts and community consensus on the use of serology testing as an effective method to respond to and mitigate the impact of the pandemic. The recommendations herein can help build community awareness and guide advocacy strategies.
Methods: A desk review was conducted to inform a working document that was subject to a multistage process of validation and feedback by a group of renowned experts. The multi-stakeholder group of experts, representing the European and international levels, convened to inform and validate the recommendations.
Results: The consensus offered eight policy recommendations organized in two main themes. The first group of recommendations provides guidance on the role and value of serology testing to contain and understand the COVID-19 pandemic. The second group targets health system strengthening aspects necessary to support the appropriate delivery of serology testing.
Conclusions: Recommendations seek to indicate how SARS-CoV-2 serology testing may positively impact national health systems, country economies and local communities. The pertinence of the recommendations is to communities in Europe, and beyond, and relevant to multiple stakeholders. Given the rapidly changing scenario, this set of recommendations should be considered a live document.