covid rapid test kits

Rapid Test Kits: How do They Work ?

The Rapid antigen test has been used extensively throughout the world at the peak of the Covid outbreak. It continues to find favor among governments and epidemiologists regarding being a dependable instrument to check and verify favorable rates in a population.

To be used in specific settings, the covid rapid test kits are convenient and indispensable to a planet still reeling from the outbreak and trying to curb the occasional attacks.

The article aims to elucidate further the basics of the Covid 19 Rapid Test Kits and their features.

What is it?

It is a point-of-care test, 

and is performed outside of the laboratory setting. The test is done to detect antigens within the body. A swab of basal sample is taken from a person suspected of being infected with the Coronavirus, and an assessment is done immediately.

The nasal samples detect antigens that would induce an immune response in the person’s body. These antigens are found on or withun the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

The Purpose

The purpose is to get a quick diagnostic result. The kits have an inbuilt Covid antigen test device and a viral extraction tube with viral lysis buffer inside. There is also a sterile swab meant for sample collection.

The Uses

These kits are meant to be used in locations prone to or at risk of infiltrating or saturated with infected people. Such locations are known as hotspots or containment zones, and these are the places where these kits are most used in.

These must be used onsite during the outbreak in sterile settings and strictly under medical supervision that adheres to region-specific or country-specific regulations. The healthcare officials are responsible for maintaining the environment and keeping the kit temperature between 2° and 30° C.

These kits can be used to conduct tests on individuals with influenza-like symptoms. People who are asymptomatic and at high risk of being in close contact with infected individuals need to be tested once between Day 5 and Day 10 of coming into contact. People at risk of contact and especially living with co-morbidities like diabetes, neurological disorders, or liver or kidney disease are also to be checked in the same manner.


They are not as sensitive as molecular PCR tests. This translates to the fact that positive results are accurate, but the chances of adverse effects are also very high.

Since the negative results might be false – infection cannot be ruled out. Thus even negative results from Covid Rapid Antigen tests need to be re-confirmed by testing with PCR test.

Double-checking becomes necessary to make sound treatment decisions and prevent infection spread.

A second limitation is that the sample collected in the extraction buffer stays stable for just one hour. It is why the tests are to be conducted immediately onsite and under appropriate healthcare conditions.

The third limitation is when the test is conducted on children. It is because children tend to shed the virus over a more extended period than adults. This leads to a difference in the test’s sensitivity between adults and children.

Rapid Test Vs. RT-PCR

RT-PCR continues to be the gold standard for Covid-19 diagnosis. Both this test and the rapid antigen aim to detect the virus rather than the antibodies produced, but the significant difference in procedure is the time taken.

RT-PCR takes 2-5 hours for sample transportation, limiting their usage across zones.

The importance of covid antigen rapid tests is thus extreme, and you should place your kit orders only with Arrow Safety Canada – to ensure timely delivery and premium quality.

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