Director of the West African Center for Cell Biology of Infectious Pathogens (WACCBIP), Professor. Gordon Awandare has said antigen test should be made much more available in the communities and even in the hospitals for rapid screening of patients and people who show up in the hospitals and clinics in the country.
“Fortunately, the Food and Drugs Authority, (FDA) has approved a number of rapid antigen test and so we need to make this much more available, increase the use in the communities and even in the hospitals for rapid screening of patients when they show up”. Prof. Awandare asserted
According to Prof. Awandare, deploying antigen testing is something we need to do more in the country to be able to quickly detect people with covid-19 and treat them immediately to limit the spread.
“When you go to the emergency room, there are so many people who have covid-like symptoms, you can use antigen test to quickly screen them and take out those which are clear cases of covid-19 even before you wait for the PCR results”.
He explained that Antigen test can tell you that this person is actively having the virus and you can take appropriate steps to give them treatment and also protect others waiting in the same space for other treatment
“In the emergency room, people are there with broken limps, others are there with heart attacks, and some are there with covid-19 so if you can do a quick antigen test, you can remove the dangers of people with the virus and these are things we can do, if you look across the world, most places now, testing is much more available so people can voluntarily test”. – He added
He continued that in some countries, they even give it to you to take home. Every day you check yourself, so we need to get to that stage and we are not saying government should pay for everything, let us make the antigen test kits available, people can buy or people can go to a pharmacy and get tested”.