WHO, NCDC: new rapid test kits need more evaluation
THE World Health Organisation (WHO) has reiterated that the PCR test remains the gold standard, following the approval of two antigen-based Rapid Diagnostic Test (RDT) kits for emergency use in the diagnosis of COVID-19.
It stated that although the new RDTs have sensitivity and specificity of 80 per cent and 97 per cent, they still need to be evaluated when they are introduced in Nigeria, to access whether those performances hold.
The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) also added that although the RDTs have their limitations, they, however, come with some benefits in terms of costs, a shorter turn-around time, and opportunity for clinicians to quickly refer patients for treatment when there is a positive case for public health workers to initiate a public health response.
The NCDC also explained that data available to it suggests that transmission of the COVID-19 virus is less likely outdoor than it is when people are gathered indoors.
Noting that the case fatality in the country is dropping, the agency added that following the election in Edo State few weeks ago, there has not been a spike of cases in the state.
It, therefore, urged Nigerians to continue to observe the recommended protocols of wearing of face masks outside the home.