Rome, January 5 – When the Omicron variant becomes dominant, an unavoidable prospect and possibly destined to take place soon, fast antigenic coatings could be made completely useless. The reason? He explains it Guido Rashi (in phto), former director of Ema and now adviser to the Commissioner for Emergency Covid Francesco Paolo Figliuolo and Scientific Director of Consulcesi, questioning this latest version of Sars-CoV-2 virus from South Africa. that “it seems to be able to escape the most commonly used diagnostic tests more often”.
The problem, also highlighted by the administration of food and drugs, is the insufficient sensitivity of the rapid antigenic coatings, which are therefore not very reliable in detecting positivity in the Omicron variant. “Preliminary data“It simply came to our notice then “They indicate that about 40 percent of people who are positive for the Omicron variant may be negative for rapid tests, almost one in two.”
Definitely not positive news, which comes in the middle of the fourth wave of Covid. The last two years of the pandemic have taught us that diagnosis and monitoring are still fundamental tools for reducing the pandemic. However, the “loss” of reliability of rapid antigen testing could make it more complicated and difficult.
“I hope up-to-date and reliable fast tests for Omicron are available soon, but in the meantime we need to raise our alert.” says Rassi. “In this context, the role of health professionals will be even more central to patient evaluation.