Covid-19 self-test kits to be available next month

COVID-19 self-testing kits will be available commercially next month after they are tested.

According to the Malaysian Associated Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Maicci), Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah told them some of the test kits being sold without approval are unreliable.

This comes after Dr Noor Hisham briefed Maicci yesterday.

“He (Noor Hisham) says – the commercial interest submits good batches for testing, but the sold ones have results that are half the testing batch – which will make self-testing unreliable,” the notes read, according to a Malaysiakini report.

This came as public pressure mounts for cheaper and more accessible Covid-19 testing amid a spike in cases, especially in the Klang Valley.

Last month, the Health Ministry set a ceiling price on Covid-19 testing at RM150 for the polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) tests, RM60 for the RTK-antigen tests and RM50 for RTK antibody tests in peninsular Malaysia.

In Sabah and Sarawak, it is RM200, RM80 and RM70 respectively.

However, private hospitals said the ceiling price does not include other related costs like personal protective equipment used during testing.

Currently, the Health Ministry only conducts free testing for those exposed to the virus through close contact, with swab tests.