Use of antigen test for screening 'not recommended' for schools offering in-person classes

Published January 27, 2022, 8:25 PM

by Merlina Hernando-Malipot

Higher education institutions (HEIs) were discouraged from using antigen tests for the screening of faculty, staff, and students once they reopened limited face-to-face classes.

(Photo from Pixabay)

“We do not recommend using antigen test for screening,” Department of Health (DOH) Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said during a webinar entitled “COVID-19 Situationer and Omicron Variant Implications for the Resumption of Limited Face-to-face classes” organized by the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) on Thursday, Jan. 27.

“We do not encourage screening of asymptomatic individuals using antigen tests,” Vergeire said when asked if DOH would encourage the use of antigen tests for faculty, staff, and students during limited face-to-face classes.

“Let us remember the value of the antigen test, ginagamit siya (this is used), and is most accurate during the time that a person is symptomatic or may sintomas (has symptoms),” she explained. DOH, Vergeire said, does not recommend using the antigen test for people who are asymptomatic because the result may not be accurate.

“Hindi po natin inire-rekomenda na gamitin ang antigen test dun sa mga taong walang sintomas baka magbigay sa inyo ng false result at kayo po ay ma-mislead sa inyong management (We do not recommend using the antigen test for people who do not have symptoms because it may give you a false result and you will be misled in your management [of COVID-19],” Vergeire said.

Vergeire explained that the use of antigen tests for faculty, staff, and students who do not have COVID-19 symptoms is not recommended by DOH when schools reopen for limited face-to-face classes because it might lead to mismanagement of the disease.

“For example, negative baka mag-false negative kasi hindi appropriate yung gamit natin and you might be misled at papasukin na natin ulit yung pala positive siya so they can infect other people (For example, [the result is] negative, [it] might be false negative because the use was not appropriate and you might be misled and we will let [that person in the campus] even they are positive, so they can infect other people),” she added.

CHED Chairman Popoy De Vera said that the webinar was organized to help HEIs make “data-driven decisions” as they prepare for the resumption of the limited face-to-face classes amid the pandemic. In the CHED COVID-19 Advisory No. 9 dated Jan. 10, CHED said that Phase 2 of the implementation of limited face-to-face classes for all programs of HEIs in areas under Alert Level 3 should begin on Jan. 31, 2022.

READ:

CHED: Limited face-to-face classes for all programs in Alert Level 3 areas to begin on Jan. 31

Meanwhile, CHED said that HEIs located in areas under Alert Level 2 “may start limited face-to-face classes anytime.”

 
CLICK HERE TO SIGN-UP
 

YOU MAY ALSO LIKE

["national","news","news"]
[2918777,3004110,3004107,3004059,3004043,3004036,3004013]