Virologist warns 72-hour ATK test result not good enough for countdown events


AN EMINENT virologist warned that research shows antigen test kit (ATK) results 72 hours earlier may not detect Omicron and this long a break means those infected could slip in and spread of infection at countdown events, Amarin TV said this afternoon (Dec. 28).

Dr Anan Jongkaewwattana, director of Veterinary Health Innovation and Management Research Group at BIOTEC-NSTDA, underscored that the correct procedure was testing at the site or no more than 12 hours earlier.

He pointed to one Omicron patient who initially got a negative result for Covid infection via ATK but positive on RT-PCR. He added that the ATK testing strip on the second day was very dark indicating a large quantity of the virus.

 Should an infected person who had earlier got a negative ATK test show up for a countdown event and be let in and then shouts to welcome the New Year the risk of spreading the infection is very high.

If the organisers test participants at the door such patients will not be able to go in and spread the infection. 

They again will get a negative ATK result on the 10th day of infection at which point will yield a weak positive result on RT-PCR but the risk is reduced.


Top: Dr. Anan Jongkaewwattana.

Home Page: Covid-19 Antigen Rapid Test. Photo: Falco Ermert (CC BY 2.0)

Also read: Ministry: If precaution not taken Omicron cases will soar to 30,000 a day

Two Westerners test positive for Omicron in Chiang Mai

 PM: No additional ticket sales at the door for New Year countdown events

3 British tourists test positive for Omicron in Hua Hin

Omicron has spread to 98 countries while 205 are infected in Thailand

PM: Only BMA’s New Year countdown events cancelled


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