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DOH to public: Don't use dengue rapid test kit on your own

TUGUEGARAO CITY, Cagayan (PIA) - - As dengue cases continuously increase, the Department of Health (DOH) region 2 warned the public not to rely on rapid diagnostic test results, instead consult health experts. 

Dr. Janet Ibay, Infectious Disease Cluster head, said though there are rapid test kits available in pharmacies, testing should be administered by trained health workers or medical technologists to ensure the accuracy and correct interpretation of results. 

She said rapid test results should not be the sole basis for determining whether a patient has dengue or none. 

"If a sick person has symptoms, it would be better to bring him or her to the nearest health facility in the barangay or at the Rural Health Unit (RHU). Do not do self-testing and interpreting of results," Ibay said. 

Ibay also explained that there are situations wherein the rapid test kits show "negative" results but the platelet count is already low because the patient's condition is not reactive to the test kit.

She further said the rapid test kit is not the only procedure for diagnosing dengue. It is only a support to the clinical diagnosis of dengue cases.

On the other hand, DOH assured that aside from insecticide against dengue, there are enough test kits given to the RHUs. 

Government agencies initiate clean-up drive in Batanes province to eliminate dengue cases. (photo from DOH fb)

Dr. Romulo Turingan, Disease Prevention and Control head, the rapid diagnostic test kit supplies were directly downloaded by DOH central office to the Provincial Health Offices to be distributed to the RHUs. 

He said priorities are based on the number of recorded cases in communities. 

Turingan also explained that they give rapid test kits to RHUs because they do not have laboratories for dengue clinical diagnosis. (OTB/PIA Cagayan) 

About the Author

Oliver Baccay

Information Officer IV

Region 2

  • Assistant Regional Director, Philippine Information Agency Region 2
  • Graduate of Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communication 
  • Graduate of Master of Arts in Education, major in English
  • Graduate of Doctor in Public Administration

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