Sri Lanka uses antigen tests to identify possible COVID-19 patients

Sri Lanka uses antigen tests to identify possible COVID-19 patients

Sri Lanka uses antigen tests to identify possible COVID-19 patients

Written by Staff Writer

06 Nov, 2020 | 9:59 am

COLOMBO (News1st): Rapid antigen tests are being carried out to detect potential COVID-19 patients in the country, amidst the second wave of infections.

“…we will use this test just like the PCR test to identify COVID-19 patients,” Dr Saman Rathnayake, the health ministry’s deputy director-general of laboratory services said.

Dr Haritha Aluthge, a member of the Government Medical Officers Association (GMOA) said, rapid antigen tests produce results much quicker than PCR tests.

“PCR tests take about 6 hours but this test can be done in about 20 to 30 minutes,” Dr Aluthge added pointing out that the test costs lesser than PCR tests as well.

Some factions have raised concerns over the usage of antigen test kits that are being used by the GMOA.

“The contract to import rapid testing kits to Sri Lanka has been handed over to the company of a person who owns a television network and is a very close ally of the government,” opposition lawmaker Nalin Bandara alleged.

He claimed that high-profile individuals in the country have been injected with a vaccine given by a China, at a cost of USD 140.

“They can inject themselves with any vaccine from China that is alright, but they must provide the people with the health services that the people need,” Bandara insisted.

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