India’s first home-based rapid antigen testing (RAT) kit for COVID-19 has received the ICMR’s approval and will be available in the market very soon. The self-testing kit is called ‘CoviSelf’ and it is manufactured by Mylab Discovery Solutions Ltd a Pune-based company.
The approved home-based rapid antigen testing (RAT) kit “Coviself” costs just ₹250 and gives results within 15 minutes. As per experts, home based-test kits can be useful to detect runaway infection and early detection in places where the infection rate is high.
Mylab Director Sujeet Jain said “CoviSelf ” will be available by end of next week in all the Pharma stores.
As per the directive of the ICMR, the test kit should only be used by those who have COVID-19 symptoms or have come in contact with laboratory-confirmed positive cases. In case you have symptoms but test negative with the RAT kit, you should get an RT-PCR test from the lab for getting the confirmed result. Individuals who will test positive through the RAT kit would be considered as true positives and would not require repeat testing.
The test kit comes with a pre-filled extraction tube, a sterile nasal swab, one test card, and a biohazard bag. For using the test kit, the individual will first have to download a home-testing mobile app called Mylab Coviself, from Google Play Store and Apple Store. The app provides complete steps how to use the testing kit and how to read the test result.
For the test, you will have to insert the nasal swab in both the nostrils up to 2 to 4 cm or until resistance is met. Roll the swab 4-5 times in both the nostril, then immerse it in the pre-filled tube and close the cap of the tube. Add two drops of liquid from the tube on the testing card and wait for 15 minutes for the result. In general, it will take 5-7 minutes to detect a positive case, but it is advised to wait for 15 minutes. Any result taking more than 20 minutes to appear will be considered invalid.
There are two sections in the test card- the control and the test section. After putting the liquid if the bar shows up only at the control section (C), that means the result is negative, and if the bar appears on both the control section and test (T) section, that means the virus has been detected and you have been tested positive.
After getting tested, you are required to click a picture of the test strip with the same mobile phone which has been used for downloading the mobile app and user registration. The app will capture the test result which is connected with the ICMR COVID-19 testing portal, where all data will be eventually stored.
The availability of this testing kit will take off the load from testing laboratories and will also help to detect the cases earlier to start the treatment.