Baguio antigen test a failure? DOH says pilot test not conclusive
MANILA, Philippines — It is too early to say that the pilot antigen testing for the coronavirus disease in Baguio City was a failure as the number of people who got tested is not that sufficient, the Department of Health (DOH) said Friday.
In an online press briefing, DOH Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said only 200 samples of travelers from Baguio were analyzed but the study needs nearly 1,000 samples before producing a final conclusion.
“Doon sa travelers, mayroon pala silang 200 travelers na nagawan ng analysis pero it is not yet sufficient sample size because iyong sample size na nakalagay sa protocol ng study, I think it is 956, at 200 pa lang ang pinagaaralan kaya hindi pa conclusive,” Vergeire said.
(For travelers, there are 200 travelers that were analyzed but it is not yet sufficient sample size because the sample size that was recommended in the protocol was I think, 956, and only 200 were analyzed so that is not yet conclusive.)
“Hindi pa sufficient iyong sample para makapagsabi na ito ang resulta at gamitin na basehan o ebidensya para gumawa tayo ng protocols so aantayin muna makumpleto iyan bago makapagbigay tayo [ng resulta],” she added.
(The sample size is not yet sufficient for us to develop a result or to use it as a basis or evidence to create a protocol so we have to wait for the samples to be completed before we can create a result.)
On Wednesday, National Task Force (NTF) spokesman Restituto Padilla said the government is looking for other COVID-19 tests to screen tourists as he claimed that the pilot study in Baguio has failed.
He said only half of the antigen test results matched the results of polymerase chain reaction tests, which is considered the gold standard test for the respiratory disease.
In Baguio City’s antigen pilot test, travelers to the city were given the antigen test and the reverse transcript-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test. The results of the two tests were then compared.
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