DOH to release guidelines on FDA-approved COVID antigen self-test kits by Friday

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 26 2022 10:47 AM

MANILA - The Department of Health will release this week guidelines on the use of self-administered COVID-19 antigen test kits and will also discuss putting a price cap on it, Usec. Maria Rosario Vergeire said Wednesday.

Abbott Panbio and Labnovation Technologies COVID-19 antigen self-test kits will be available in licensed pharmacies after getting the approval of the Food and Drug Administration.

"Meron po tayong policy na ilalabas po natin maybe tomorrow or Friday that will state the guidelines, but basically, what you’re going to do is you buy this, you can use it at home, but you need to follow carefully the instructions kasi meron hong technical process dyan kung saan kokolekta kayo ng specimen sa sarili niyo. Kailangan tama, susundin niyo po yung nakalakip na label kung saan nandoon ang instructions," Vergeire told ANC's Headstart.

(We will release a policy maybe tomorrow or Friday that will state the guidelines but basically, what you’re going to do is you buy this, you can use it at home, but you need to follow carefully the instructions because there is a technical process there where you will collect specimen from yourself. It has to be correct, you have to follow the instructions in the label.)

"As to reporting, we are going to include in our guidelines how they will be reporting or informing their local governments on the use and local government’s report to the DOH," she said.

She said the agency is studying if its current system where citizens use a "chat box" can also be used to report on the results of these self-test kits.

"We are trying to look at this system kung kakayanin po yung capacity (if it has the capacity) that citizens using self-administered test kits will be able to chat in their use and we can be able to get the results and have a sense of how many are being used for these self-administered test kits at home," she said.

Vergeire said like other commodities that were sold in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic, the antigen test kits will also have a price cap, which will be determined by the DOH and the Department of Trade and Industry within a week or 2.

The DOH had earlier said that positive results from antigen tests may be accurate for individuals with symptoms. However, a negative result from these tests often have to be confirmed by an RT-PCR test.

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