COVID-19 rapid testing kits to be used to test school teachers in Qatar
According to Chair of the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology at Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) Enas Al Kuwari, HMC has begun using rapid antigen testing for COVID-19 with symptomatic cases.
Al Kuwari had pointed out teachers who have yet to receive their COVID-19 vaccine doses will be tested using rapid testing kits that have been standardized for the purpose of use in schools.
The Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology at HMC is currently collaborating with Primary Healthcare Corporation (PHCC) to train Health Hospital School's nurses on using the manual rapid antigen test kit as a precautionary measure with unvaccinated teachers on a weekly basis.
She stressed that the new methods adopted with the teachers seek to provide a healthy and safe environment for both teachers and students.
With the test results ready in just 10 to 15 minutes, the rapid test required a sample from the nose. Moreover, the test kit can reach 97 percent accuracy in detecting cases in its first week of infection.
She also added that the test is used in cases that have shown infection symptoms such as fever or coughing, among other symptoms.
In addition to being accurate and fast, she communicated that the rapid test is much more convenient to take a sample from the nose in the rapid test compared to the PCR test, which relies on the nasopharyngeal swab.
The COVID-19 rapid tests are currently being used in the emergency units at Hamad General Hospital, women's hospital, Al Khora hospital, Al Wakra hospital, and the children's hospital.
HMC’s Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology has provided a wide variety of COVID-19 tests since the start of the pandemic.
Al Kuwari explained that a positive result from the rapid test will be followed by a PCR test, given the latter will remain the gold standard for diagnosing COVID-19 infections.
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