Rapid Antigen Testing FAQs
What is Rapid Antigen Testing (RAT)?
Rapid antigen testing involves a nasal or oral fluid swab sample that is then generally mixed with a chemical solution and applied to a reactive test strip (generally in a small plastic test cassette) which displays a test result in 10-15 minutes. There are some varying test formats, but essentially they all work in a similar manner.
Rapid antigen testing does not replace the ‘gold standard PCR testing’ that has been running since the outbreak started.
How is Rapid Antigen Testing being used in Australia?
In Australia, Rapid Antigen Testing (RA Testing) is approved by the TGA (Therapeutic Goods Administration) from 1 November 2021 for self-testing at home and work, meaning consumers may purchase the test for personal use without needing to see a healthcare professional.
In addition to self-testing there certain point-of-care tests that are approved for use by the TGA under supervision of select AHPRA registered healthcare professionals (eg. doctors, nurses, pharmacists etc) which may be used for healthcare and workplace testing programs.
How do I conduct RA Testing at my worksite?
The TGA have published guidelines to assist business conduct onsite testing programs. Full guidelines published by the TGA can be accessed here.