Roche’s Rapid Antigen Test: A game-changer for healthcare systems

KARACHI -Roche Diagnostics Pakistan recently launched a new cutting-edge 99.6% specific SARS-CoV-2 Rapid Antigen Test to enable clinicians to make timely decisions for their patients, rather than spend crucial hours waiting for the results of the PCR tests prior to their surgeries or emergency treatments.
This Rapid Antigen Test is part of a new class of quicker screening tools named for the identifying proteins called antigens they detect on the surface of SARS-CoV-2. As a valuable tool that produces results much more quickly than the gold-standard PCR diagnostic assay, Roche’s Rapid Antigen test delivers quick results in 15 minutes, thereby helping the hospitals in managing the emergencies, surgeries and operations on a timely basis. This test also earlier received approval from WHO and CDC followed by NCOC and Pakistan’s Ministry of Health. While the PCR test remains the gold standard for the diagnosis of COVID-19, its availability, accessibility and time to result remains a challenge. This is where the Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) can be of substantial help in increasing the testing capacity.
“The second wave of COVID-19 in Pakistan is proving to be deadlier, requiring more efforts on every front. In such an alarming situation, the Rapid Antigen Test could ease the burden on PCR testing. Wherever the PCR test is inaccessible or not available, our 96.5% sensitive test can aid in testing symptomatic as well as asymptomatic patients who have had confirmed exposure to the virus or who work in highly risky environments,” said Abdul Qayyum, Country Manager – Roche Diagnostics Pakistan.
“The buffer solution used in the test can disinfect the virus in two minutes which makes it safe for operators as well,” he added.
The COVID-19 pandemic has clearly demonstrated the value and importance of testing. During this entire time, Roche Diagnostics has been at the forefront in the fight against this global healthcare crisis and in a remarkably short period has created a comprehensive testing portfolio for this entirely new disease. Earlier Roche launched a fully automated PCR test with capacity of around 1,000 tests per day to detect the active infection of SARS-CoV-2. Tracking the progress of the SARS-CoV-2 virus in the population and understanding the antibodies produced then emerged as a priority for which a rapid and lab-based Antibody Test was launched, followed by the recently launched Rapid Antigen Test.
Roche has been manufacturing millions of tests per month to help combat the pandemic and reduce the burden on healthcare systems globally and in Pakistan. With its comprehensive portfolio of reliable and high-quality tests, Roche Diagnostics Pakistan is playing a key role in helping the healthcare system in Pakistan manage different stages and needs of different types of patients affected by COVID-19.

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