CORONAVIRUS/COVID home test kits to go on sale in Taiwan next week: FDA

06/19/2021 09:06 PM
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A self-test COVID-19 strip. Pixabay image for illustrative purpose
A self-test COVID-19 strip. Pixabay image for illustrative purpose

Taipei, June 19 (CNA) COVID-19 home test kits will become available in stores across Taiwan next week, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said Saturday.

The home test kits will not be available online but instead will be sold at physical stores such as pharmacies and licensed medical equipment suppliers, said Chien Chia-hung (錢嘉宏), deputy head of the FDA's Medical Devices and Cosmetics Division.

He said the nucleic acid home test kits are likely to cost over NT$1,000 (US$35.97), while the rapid antigen self test kits will be much cheaper.

In its guidelines for COVID-19 home testing, the Ministry of Health and Welfare (MOHW) has advised that anyone who has symptoms of COVID-19 should seek immediate medical attention.

People in home quarantine who test positive with a COVID-19 home kit should contact the local health authorities immediately or call the "1922" hotline for assistance, the ministry said.

Adding to those guidelines, Chien said that test strips showing a positive result should also be taken to the hospital, where they will be properly disposed of, and the individual will also receive a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test to confirm whether or not they are infected.

In cases where the home test is negative, the strip and swab should be placed in a small plastic bag before being tossed in the trash can, he said.

Taiwan has authorized four domestic companies to import three types of COVID-19 home test kits for sale to the public.

Earlier this week, the FDA also approved the domestic production of one type of rapid home test kit for COVID-19.

(By Chiang Hui-chun and Ko Lin)

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