x

Coronavirus

WHO: Rapid COVID Tests to Be Given to Poorer Countries

September 28, 2020

GENEVA — The head of the World Health Organization says it and partners have agreed to a plan to roll out 120 million rapid diagnostic tests for the coronavirus to help lower- and middle-income countries make up ground in a testing gap with richer countries — even if it’s not fully funded yet.

At $5 apiece, the cost of the antigen-based rapid diagnostic test for which WHO issued an emergency-use listing last week, the program initially requires $600 million. It is supposed to get started as early as next month to provide better access in areas where it’s harder to get the PCR tests that are used often in many wealthier nations.

The rapid tests look for antigens, or proteins found on the surface of the virus. They are generally considered less accurate, though much faster, than higher-grade genetic tests, known as PCR tests. Those tests require processing with specialty lab equipment and chemicals. Typically that turnaround takes several days to deliver results to patients.

WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus hailed the program as “good news” in the fight against COVID-19.

“These tests provide reliable results in approximately 15 to 30 minutes, rather than hours or days, at a lower price with less sophisticated equipment,” he told a news conference in Geneva. “This will enable the expansion of testing, particularly in hard-to-reach areas that do not have lab facilities or enough trained health workers to carry out PCR tests.”

“We have an agreement, we have seed funding and now we need the full amount of funds to buy these tests,” he said, without specifying.

RELATED

ATHENS – While the New Democracy government is easing health restrictions for rabid anti-vaxxers, those fully vaccinated against COVID-19 may need a fourth shot in the autumn.

Top Stories

General News

FALMOUTH, MA – The police in Falmouth have identified the victim in an accident involving a car plunging into the ocean on February 20, NBC10 Boston reported.

General News

NEW YORK – Meropi Kyriacou, the new Principal of The Cathedral School in Manhattan, was honored as The National Herald’s Educator of the Year.

General News

PHILADELPHIA – The Federation of Hellenic Societies of Philadelphia and Greater Delaware Valley announced that the Evzones, the Presidential Guard of Greece will be participating in the Philadelphia Greek Independence Day Parade on March 20.

Video

Mission, TNH’s New Travel Documentary Series with Clelia Charissis

Every weekend, TNH and Clelia Charissis are on a mission, traveling around Greece and the world to highlight places through the people we meet along the way.

Enter your email address to subscribe

Provide your email address to subscribe. For e.g. abc@xyz.com

You may unsubscribe at any time using the link in our newsletter.