Rapid Antigen Tests

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Rapid Antigen Tests

RATs are no longer just for critical workers

Getting a result in 15 minutes is an enormous improvement on isolating nervously while waiting days for a text, and Rapid Antigen Testing is a more pleasant experience than the PCR test.

Because RAT testing can detect the Covid-19 virus in a matter of minutes, action can be taken much more quickly to avoid onward spread. This keeps your workforce safer and means staff do not have to be stood down while awaiting a test result. Contacts that test negative with RATs can remain at work, keeping businesses going,

Rapid Antigen Testing is the least invasive method of testing. It is a nasal swab, but it's only inserted into the lower part of the nasal cavity, so it's much more comfortable than PCR COVID testing.

The quick turnaround happens because the swab is mixed with solution and placed on an indicator device to see if a particular protein of the virus, known as an antigen, is present.

Rapid antigen testing in New Zealand

The Director General of Health has confirmed that businesses can use RATs as part of managing the health and safety of their workers in their response to Covid-19, but they need to secure, use and pay for their own private supplies. Approved companies, such as INSINC can sell 'high quality, safe and appropriate rapid antigen screening for COVID-19’.

Rapid antigen testingThe Rapid Antigen Tests we sell have gone through a thorough evaluation process and are approved for importation, supply, distribution and sale in Aotearoa New Zealand by the Ministry of Health (MOH).

We sell the Orient Gene COVID 19 Rapid Test antigen kit which offers great reliability and allows immediate detection of coronavirus antibodies 24-48 hours after infection with a nasopharyngeal sample. The overall accuracy of this COVID-19 Antigen Self-Test is 98.73%. During testing, 97.25% of COVID-19 positive samples and 100% of COVID-19 negative samples were identified.

The samples used to determine the performance of this test were collected during a clinical study conducted in the USA. The samples were confirmed positive and negative by a USFDA emergency use authorized PCR test.

These test kits are intended for self-testing purposes by untrained individuals outside laboratories or clinical settings, such as in your home and workplace.

Contact us for orders of 5 tests per pack or bulk orders of cartons of 100 (20 x 5 test packs).

What is rapid antigen testing? What does it involve?

This Rapid Covid-19 (Antigen) Self-Test is a swab test for the nose to check if you are infectious. All necessary re-agents are provided, and no additional equipment is needed. RATs can be used for people who have no symptoms.

Each test takes a few minutes to set up and results will be set up ready within a further 15 minutes.

Who is the test for?

This test is suitable for adults aged 18+ who can self-test and report, with assistance if needed.

Adolescents 12-17 can self-test and report with adult supervision, although the adult may conduct the test if necessary.

Children under 12 years of age should be tested by an adult. Do not conduct the test if you do not feel confident testing a child. Do not continue the test if the child feels pain.

This test is not suitable for people:

  • who are prone to nosebleeds
  • who have had facial or head injury surgery in the last 6 months.

What does the test tell me?

If you test positive for Covid-19 you can report your result so the relevant government departments can monitor the spread of the virus.

If you test negative for Covid-19, it is likely that you were not infectious at the time the test was taken. A negative test result, however, is not a guarantee that you do not have coronavirus.

Prepare your test area and check your test kit contents

In your test box you should have:

  • swab inside sealed wrapper
  • test cassette in sealed pouch
  • plastic waste bag
  • extraction tube
  • nozzle cap

Preparing for the test

Immediately before performing the test, clear, clean and dry a flat surface to place the test kit. This is to avoid contaminating the test.

  • Keeping the tube away from your face, gently peel off the sealing film.
  • Insert the extraction tube containing the buffer into the dotted hole on the backside of the kit to avoid spilling it while you use the swab.
  • Gently blow your nose and then throw away the tissue and wash hands thoroughly.
  • Find the sterile swab in the sealed wrapper. Identify the soft, fabric tip of the swab. Peel open the swab package and gently take out the swab. Never touch the fabric tip of the swab with your hands or touch any surfaces.

Do not perform the test in direct sunlight as this may lead to an incorrect result.

Taking swab samples

First nostril

  • Place the fabric tip of the swab just inside one nostril. Ensure that the fabric tip of the swab is placed 2.5 cm inside the first nostril.
  • Gently wipe the swab around the inside of their nostril in a circular motion 5 times. Ensure there is good contact between the fabric tip of the swab and the inside of the nostril.
  • No force is needed, and you do not have to push far into the nostril.

Second nostril

  • Use the same swab, place the fabric tip of the swab just inside the other nostril (approximately 2.5cm).
  • Gently wipe the swab around the inside of your nostril in a circular motion 5 times. Ensure there is good contact between the fabric tip of the swab and the inside of the nostril.

If you, or the person you are testing, experience a nosebleed during the swabbing, please stop swabbing. The swab can not be tested. It is recommended to consult your doctor if bleeding persists.

Processing swab samples

  • Place the fabric tip of swab into the extraction tube fluid.
  • Press the tip against the edge of the extraction tube with force, while rotating it around the tube at least 6 times.
  • Leave the swab in the extraction tube, set a timer and leave for 1 minute.
  • Withdraw swab from the extraction tube.
  • Place the swab into the plastic waste bag.
  • Push the nozzle cap tightly on to the extraction tube to avoid any leaks.
  • Place the extraction tube back in the extraction tube holder.
  • Take the test cassette out of the sealed pouch and place it onto the cleaned flat surface. Make sure you place the test cassette on a flat and level surface. Do not move the test cassette during the test.
  • Gently squeeze the extraction tube to place 4 drops of liquid onto the sample well (marked 5) on the test cassette. Slowly add drops and do not overfill.
  • Set a timer.
  • Wait 15 minutes to read your result.

Do not leave the test to develop for longer than 20 minutes as this will void the test. And you will need to conduct the test again.

Reading RAT results

A line should appear next to C pretty quickly – that’s the control line. If one appears next to T, the test line, after about 15 minutes, you’ve got the virus

  • (+) Positive result: the presence of two lines, a control line (C) and a test line (T), even a faint line, within the result window indicates the test is positive.
  • Negative result: the presence of only a control line (C) within the result window indicates the test is negative.
  • If the control line (C) is not visible within the Cc result window after performing the test, the result is considered void. If you get a void result, this means that the test has not run correctly. You need to take another test. Use a new test kit, but do not reuse any of the components from the test you have just done.

Does this test detect all the virus and all the variants?

RATs are not as accurate at detecting Covid-19 as nasal and saliva PCR tests, which is why in New Zealand, PCR tests are still considered the gold standard.

In addition, all viruses can change, and the virus which causes Covid-19 is known to have a number of these variants. The rapid Covid-19 antigen Self-Test detects a part of the virus which is known to be less likely to change over time; the nucleocapsid protein, which is a small piece of SARS-CoV-2.

However, if you test negative but are still unwell, your symptoms become worse, or you develop new symptoms, it is important that you seek a healthcare professional right away.

To talk to us about how we can help you stop the spread of the virus and keep your business up and running, please call 0508 467 462 or you can email us at any time.

Tags: Covid-19  Coronavirus  

Posted: Wednesday 23 February 2022