Sarawak Health Department may look into extending quarantine period to 21 days, says director

Dr Chin said both the RTK-Antigen test and rT-PCR test had been conducted in the state for Covid-19 screening, to meet various needs. — Picture by Hari Anggara
Dr Chin said both the RTK-Antigen test and rT-PCR test had been conducted in the state for Covid-19 screening, to meet various needs. — Picture by Hari Anggara

KUCHING, Oct 10­ — The state Health Department will look into the Ministry of Health’s (MoH) recent disclosure that the incubation period for Covid-19 could be 21 days rather than 14 days, said director Dr Chin Zin Hing yesterday.

“Because of these new developments, the ministry has taken note that the incubation period for Covid-19 may be 21 days long. We will have to look at it to see if we need to increase the number of days of quarantine,” he said in response to questions during a press conference here.

Dr Chin said both the RTK-Antigen test and rT-PCR test had been conducted in the state for Covid-19 screening, to meet various needs.

For the RTK-Antigen test, he said it was a rapid test for Covid-19 and the method of testing would be different from rT-PCR.

He added that the sensitivity of the test would also be different, while rT-PCR would remain the standard screening test for Covid-19.

“The rT-PCR test is still the standard but it takes time, at least one day for the result. RTK-Antigen is used for rapid screening and sometimes we use rT-PCR to repeat the test.

“In some cases, we use rT-PCR to confirm the test results,” he said, adding that some Covid-19 tests had to do with timing as well.

He said if a sample was taken at an early stage, the test result may not come back positive.

Dr Chin was responding to talks that RTK-Antigen could be a weakness in conducting Covid-19 screening in an effective manner. — Borneo Post Online

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