The rapid antigen Covid-19 test kits procured from South Korea by the Health Ministry is expected to cost the government below RM50 a unit, said Health director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah
The test kits will allow Malaysia to significantly increase its Covid-19 testing, after the Health Ministry found these have an 84.4 per cent sensitivity rate with a 100 per cent specificity to the Covid-19 coronavirus.
“The rapid antigen test kits from South Korea, we have placed the order, but the cost is less than RM50.
“We are still negotiating because we have volume, and with the volume of sales we expect it to be cheaper than RM50,” said Dr Noor Hisham during the Health Ministry’s daily Covid-19 press conference.
He had said the test kits are expected to arrive sometime next week, which would allow the ministry to conduct larger scale mass testings beyond several specific targeted groups.
Dr Noor Hisham explained that the rapid test kits can produce results within a shorter period of time as compared to the reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test method.
The rapid tests kits would also be able to produce results at the point of care in clinics and hospitals, without needing the samples to be transported to one of the 43 specific laboratories.
Dr Noor Hisham earlier announced a total of only 69 new infections recorded in the last 24 hours as of noon today, bringing the cumulative number of local infections to 5,251.
However, a total of 2,967 patients or 56.5 of infections have recovered and were discharged, leaving only 2,198 active cases still receiving treatment, with 86 deaths.
Source: Malay Mail