HEALTH Minister, Obadiah Moyo has distanced Zimbabwe’s health authorities from allegations of using Rapid Diagnostic Tests for Covid19 diagnosis.
Speaking during the sidelines of a function held to incept the new National Aids Council (NAC) board Wednesday , Moyo said the RDT have not and will never be used for diagnostic purposes.
“We would like to set the record straight ,RDT have not been used for diagnostic purposes. What we use for diagnosis is Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) because it is more accurate when detecting the virus,” he said.
He said RDT is only used as a survey tool and underscored that government cannot use such a method which places the lives of citizens at very high risk.
The remarks come against a background where Zimbabwe Senior Hospital Doctors Association urged health authorities to discard the Rapid Diagnostic Testing (RDT) on suspected COVID-19 patients arguing the process poses higher risks of spreading the deadly virus.
The doctors group accused government of using this method to test returnees from Covvid19 hotspots.
They raised concern that RDT method was not an effective way of detecting the disease exposing higher risks to the populace as an infected person can slip the testing process.
“The COVID-19 RDT has a fundamental limitation; they rely on the detection of antibodies made by the patient to COVID-19 infection a week to 12 days after they first become sick and are spreading it,” the higher-ranking doctors said.