WHICH RFFIT TEST SHOULD I CHOOSE?
Two different recommendations are available for evaluating antibody response to Rabies vaccination using the Rapid Fluorescent Focus Inhibition Test (RFFIT) – The World Health Organization (WHO) and the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). These two guidelines also use different terminology to quantify antibody level.
ACIP recommends a 50% endpoint titer of greater than or equal to (>) 1:11. This titer means that your blood serum can be diluted 1:5 and still neutralize 100% of the rabies virus present. It also means that your blood serum could be diluted 1:11 and still neutralize at least 50% of the rabies virus present. This titer is approximately equal to 0.1 International Units (IU) per mL.
WHO recommends antibody levels greater than or equal to (>) 0.5 International Units (IU) per mL. This value is higher than the ACIP recommendations.
Atlanta Health Associates offers your choice of the following tests:
WHO SCREEN – $45.00 – Reported in IU/mL only. The 0.5 IU/mL threshold is included. If your titer is higher than ~1.0 IU/mL, you will receive a of >1.0 IU/mL instead of the actual value (5.6 IU/mL as an example).
ACIP SCREEN – $60.00 – Reported as a 50% endpoint titer and IU/mL. The 1:11 threshold is included. For a high titer, a result of >1:56 and >1.0 IU/mL will be reported instead of the actual value.
WHO/ACIP Endpoint – $70.00 – Reported in IU/mL and 50% endpoint titer. Both WHO and ACIP thresholds are included. High values are reported up to ~15IU/mL.
Atlanta Health Associates, Inc., does not perform diagnostic serology without coordination with Local/Federal Health Authorities
DO YOU PROVIDE SUPPLIES FOR COLLECTION & SHIPMENT?
We do not provide supplies for collection or shipment of your sample. Collection supplies can usually be obtained from a local Health Department or doctor’s office. Shipping supplies are available from FedEx, or UPS. All samples should be shipped according to Biohazard regulations as outlined in the OSHA Bloodborne Pathogens Standard. Guidelines for shipping via FedEX can be found HERE. Guidelines for shipping via UPS areHERE. If you choose to send your sample through the US Postal Service, you can find their guidelines HERE.
WHO SHOULD RECEIVE RABIES VACCINE?
Candidates for this important vaccine include:
Persons expecting to travel to those countries where rabies is endemic
High risk groups including veterinarians and/or their staff, veterinary students, employees working with animal hospitals, wildlife workers, animal control handlers, park or animal exhibit workers and disaster workers involved with animals.
Anyone working in an area of expertise where there is a risk of encouter with an animal carrying the rabies virus
WHERE CAN I RECEIVE/OBTAIN RABIES VACCINE?
Rabies Vaccine is available in the United State through:
Local/State/Federal Health Agencies
Private Infectious Disease Clinics
Regional Hospitals with “International Travel” Clinics
HOW DO I MONITOR MY IMMUNE STATUS?
Once the pre-exposure vaccine series or booster is administered, individuals may routinely submit a blood sample for serologic testing – specifically:
The Rapid Fluorescent Focus Inhibition Test (RFFIT), CPT Code 86382
This viral neutralizing antibody test determines the presence of rabies antibody, and whether this antibody is functioning properly. (i.e. the antibody complexes with live rabies virus, and clears it so that further infection is neutralized.) The RFFIT is recommended by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the Advisory Committee on Immunication Practices (ACIP) and The World Health Organization (WHO). Other tests are not appropriate for rabies antibody determination.
*From Human Rabies Prevention
WHAT DO THE RESULTS MEAN?
A titer > 0.5 International Units (IU) indicates a positive antibody response to rabies vaccination.
A titer of < 0.5 IU indicates a need for a booster dose of vaccine. (Per WHO Guidelines)
A titer NOT showing complete neutralization at the 1:5 dilution indicates a need for a booster dose of vaccine (Per ACIP Guidelines.)
See “Which RFFIT Test Should I Choose” section above for more information.
HOW OFTEN SHOULD I BE TESTED?
A sample may be submitted for testing 14-21 days after the initial series has been completed, or after receiving a booster injection, but is generally not necessary.
A sample may be submitted for evaluation periodically depending on your risk level.
*From Human Rabies Prevention
HOW DO I PACKAGE MY SPECIMEN(S)?
Centrifuge the specimen and decant the serum from separator tube into a plastic tube and label appropriately.
Check with your chosen shipping carrier to determine their requirements for packaging and labeling biohazardous substances. Each carrier has different requirements.
The specimen should be double bagged with absorbent material.
The specimen should then be packaged in a container suitable for shipment.
All samples should be shipped according to Biohazard regulations according to OSHA Bloodborne Pathogens Standard. Guidelines for FedEX can be found HERE. Guidelines for UPS are HERE. If you choose to send your sample through the US Postal Service, you can find their guidlines HERE.
WHERE DO I SEND MY SPECIMEN(S)?
Your properly packaged sample should be sent to:
ATLANTA HEALTH ASSOCIATES, INC.
309 PIRKLE FERRY ROAD, SUITE D300
CUMMING, GA 30040
The request form can be downloaded on our website by clicking the link at the top of the page or click here.
If necessary, the request form can be faxed or emailed upon request.
HOW DO I PAY FOR MY TEST ASSAY?
Individuals should include a personal check or money order for the proper amount. Be sure to include special handling fees if appropriate. You may also pay with a credit card for an additional fee by calling your information to us.
Institutions and clinics should include billing information including a purchase order number if required.