DHA confirms using PCR tests to diagnose COVID-19

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The Dubai Health Authority (DHA) has confirmed that it relies on polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests to diagnose COVID-19 in the emirate.

The DHA’s statement comes after reports of a rapid antibody testing method came out, which aims to detect antibodies produced by the immune system several days after contracting the virus, indicating a previous infection.

It has clarified that PCR tests are the only type currently approved by international and local authorities.

The test is used to detect the presence of viral RNA through a nasal swab, which, if found, helps confirm that the person is sick.

Health authorities have also explained that the World Health Organisation (WHO) has recommended limiting the use of rapid testing to epidemiological monitoring in surveys, research and epidemiological studies.

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