Thailand’ Mahidol University has introduced cheaper and faster Covid-19 test kits that use a patients saliva to detect the coronavirus.
Dr Opat Kankawinpong, director-general of the Department of Medical Sciences, Palangpon Kongsaeree, dean of the Faculty of Science at Mahidol University, and also Dr Piyamit Sritara, dean of the Faculty of Medicine Ramathibodi Hospital, said the new solution used RT-LAMP technology to test patients’ saliva.
The technique was used to test 200 saliva samples. Of which 182 of the Covid-19 test kits tested positive for the coronavirus. The technique was faster and more efficient than using swabs to collect samples. Swabs from nasal passage hurt patients and also caused them to cough. Consequently possibly transmuting the disease to the tester.
Tests also found that salivary glands could contract COVID-19, they said.
Covid-19 Test kits with RT-LAMP technology require patients to spit saliva into collection cups containing preservative. A test in a laboratory takes only 45 minutes to produce a result. The cost of the technique is five times cheaper than a conventional test.
Thailand has used the COVID-19 RT-PCR tests that are time-consuming and costly.
The faculties of science and medicine of Mahidol University asked for financial aid worth 30.9 million baht to produce 50,000 RT-LAMP Covid-19 test kits for the government. The new test kits will be ready for use next week.