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Self Testing Is Essential to Confront SARS-CoV-2 Outbreaks

March 16, 2022 • 11:05 am CDT
Image by Ernesto Eslava
(Coronavirus Today)

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

Note - This news post edited WHO content - WHO/2019-nCoV/Ag-RDTs/Self_testing/2022.1 - for clarity and was curated for mobile readers.