Authorities says cheaper Covid-19 assessments will probably be rolled out at airports

In a transfer to scale back logistical issues on the nation’s factors of entry, cupboard introduced on Thursday that it will implement antigen testing.

In an announcement, the federal government mentioned the antigen assessments for Covid-19 detection could be rolled out to all ports of entry with instant impact. As a part of easing the lockdown and transferring to alert degree one, the nation opened its borders on October 1.

Stage one journey rules stipulate that every one travellers arriving on the port of entry with no licensed damaging Covid-19 take a look at consequence — not older than 72 hours — have to be examined on the level of entry earlier than getting into the nation. The antigen take a look at will probably be finished at a charge of between R150 and R170, which will probably be payable by the traveller.

The federal government urged travellers to be sure that they can make the fee on the level of entry, as the fee will probably be payable by the travellers and never SA or their nation of origin.

It additionally mentioned it was conscious that some neighbouring international locations, like Lesotho, don’t have the capability to conduct PCR testing for all travellers destined for SA.

“Antigen testing will due to this fact allow the administration of the inflow of travellers with out licensed PCR assessments timeously,” cupboard mentioned in an announcement.

The World Well being Organisation lately permitted using fast antigen assessments for Covid-19 as a diagnostic screening and surveillance instrument in communities the place a fast result’s required at low value.

Speedy antigen assessments have been generally used within the analysis of respiratory pathogens, together with influenza viruses and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV). The South African Well being Merchandise Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA) has granted emergency use authorisation (EUA) for 2 corporations to provide antigen assessments.

There’s anticipation that extra of those assessments will develop into obtainable from different suppliers. The Nationwide Well being Laboratory Service (NHLS) will probably be procuring these assessments initially to be used on the ports of entry.