Red Cross: Saliva COVID-19 test has 99% success rate in US

The cheaper, saliva-based test for COVID-19 has garnered a 99% detection rate in the US, the Philippine Red Cross disclosed.

Former Health Secretary and now head of the Philippine Red Cross’ biomolecular laboratories Paulyn Ubial said that the PRC is still waiting on the approval of the Department of Health Technology Assessment Council.

To recall, the saliva test recommendation had already reached the desk of Health Secretary Francisco Duque for approval as early as November.

Ubial said, “The saliva test is cheaper and simpler to do. In the University of Illinois, they’ve conducted one million saliva tests, and their detection or concordance rate is 99%.”

According to the Red Cross, administering the saliva-based tests does not require swab kits, a specimen collector and skilled professional, nor expensive collection vials. Processing time for saliva samples is also shorter as it takes only three hours compared to the swab tests, which can take six to seven hours.

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