PRC: Saliva test as accurate as nasal swab test | Inquirer News

PRC: Saliva test as accurate as nasal swab test

By: - Reporter / @MegINQ
/ 05:12 AM January 26, 2021

CHEAPER TEST Philippine Red Cross chair and CEO Richard Gordon leads the saliva test launching in Mandaluyong City on Monday. —NINO JESUS ORBETA

MANILA, Philippines — Filipinos now have a choice to get accurately tested for the new coronavirus without fear of having to endure nasopharyngeal swab tests after the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) on Monday formally launched its saliva polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test.

Michael Tee, lead researcher for the saliva test, said the new procedure was 98.23-percent accurate compared with the RT-PCR swab test, which had a 99-percent accuracy rate.


This meant that 98.23 percent of those who underwent saliva and swab tests saw the same results in both, Tee explained.

Since the saliva test would also be processed by the same reverse transcription-PCR (RT-PCR) machines used in swab test samples, PRC chair and CEO Richard Gordon explained that the PRC could double the number of tests its molecular laboratories were processing daily.


“Testing is so important. After we conduct tests, we can immediately isolate those who are sick so we can prevent the spread of the virus. Then we can also treat [the patient], especially if the virus was detected early,” Gordon said.

Currently, the PRC has 13 molecular laboratories in the country that can process 9,000 tests daily, but Gordon clarified that this number could easily be doubled once Filipinos opt to undergo the saliva test.

Those interested in getting a saliva test must book an appointment through, choose a location and date for the test.

But those who want to undergo the saliva test must not eat, drink, gargle or smoke cigarettes and e-cigarettes 30 minutes before they are tested.

At the testing sites, they would be given a sterilized container with a barcode and a funnel, which they can use to transfer about 1 to 2 milliliters of their saliva, unlike the “more invasive” swab test.

Experts added that the saliva test would be significantly cheaper at P2,000 compared with nasal swab tests that cost at least P3,800. INQ

For more news about the novel coronavirus click here.
What you need to know about Coronavirus.
For more information on COVID-19, call the DOH Hotline: (02) 86517800 local 1149/1150.

The Inquirer Foundation supports our healthcare frontliners and is still accepting cash donations to be deposited at Banco de Oro (BDO) current account #007960018860 or donate through PayMaya using this link .

Read Next
Don't miss out on the latest news and information.

Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.

TAGS: COVID-19, PRC, Red Cross, RT-PCR test, saliva test, Sen. Dick Gordon
For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.

© Copyright 1997-2021 | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.