Government to roll out antigen tests at all ports of entry
Information below, with the cutesy of SATSA:
Government has released a statement
stipulating that antigen tests for SARS-CoV-2 detection will be rolled out to
all ports of entry in South Africa with immediate effect.
The purpose of this rollout is to alleviate the logistical complications that a point of entry COVID-19 PCR test poses, including cost, time and capacity.
Antigen tests (different from antibody tests) are immunoassays that detect the presence of a specific viral antigen. The advantage of the antigen test is that it costs about R150-R170, opposed to R850 for the PCR test, and the results are available in 15 minutes.
The statement outlines the procedure for travellers arriving at a port of entry without a certified negative PCR test, the administration of the antigen test, and requirements should a test come back positive.
Government wishes to reassure all affected people that these measures are put in place not to penalise travellers but to protect each other from the devastations of COVID-19.
However, we have raised queries regarding some of these measures as we wish to ensure that travellers are treated fairly upon arrival and that those who are safe to enter, are able to do so without unnecessary burden.
SATSA is assessing government’s statement and seeking further clarity on the impact to the tourism industry. We will communicate any developments as they are made known and update our FAQs accordingly.