Self Testing Is Essential to Confront SARS-CoV-2 Outbreaks
The World Health Organization (WHO) recently issued interim guidance regarding the timely and accurate diagnostic testing for the SARS-CoV-2 virus is an essential part of a comprehensive COVID-19 response strategy.
Antigen-detecting rapid diagnostic tests (Ag-RDT) can be performed by individuals who collect their specimen, perform a simple, fast test and interpret their test result in themselves at a time and place of their choosing, termed COVID-19 self-testing.
This interim guidance issued on March 9, 2022, provides a new recommendation that COVID-19 self-testing, using SARS-CoV-2 Ag-RDTs, should be offered as part of SARS-CoV-2 testing services.
It also includes implementation considerations that can guide decisions on whether and how to adopt self-testing in different contexts, including the populations being prioritized; the disease prevalence in that population.
And the impact on the accessibility of testing, health care services, and result reporting.
The WHO says 'Self-testing should always be voluntary and never mandatory or coercive. It is important that in certain settings, such as schools and workplaces, self-testing costs are not borne by students or workers.'
Overall, about 828 million test results have been reported to the U.S. CDC during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Additional SARS-CoV-2 test news is posted at CoronavirusToday.com/tests.
Note - This news post edited WHO content - WHO/2019-nCoV/Ag-RDTs/Self_testing/2022.1 - for clarity and was curated for mobile readers.