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Six rapid COVID-19 tests approved

Published: (Updated: ) in Australian News by .

Six rapid COVID-19 tests have been approved as experts investigating whether they can be rolled out in high-risk workplaces.

There's a growing push to change the approach to COVID-19 testing amid fears fatigue of the virus is leading to complacency.

The federal government has indicated its top medical minds are looking into the idea.

While the devastating virus remains at large, queues at coronavirus clinics are shrinking and that has experts deeply worried.

COVID testing

"We run the risk of the virus escaping us again and the need for further lockdowns," Dean Whiting from Pathology Technology Australia told 9News.

Now, there's a growing push to change the approach to testing, instead of simply leaving it to people with symptoms to turn up.

An article in a top medical journal, The New England Journal of Medicine, proposes "frequent, cheap and rapid tests at scale to mitigate outbreaks".

In this scenario, even those with no symptoms would get swabbed with individuals being tested every third or fourth day.

COVID testing

Medical experts say "rapid antigen tests" could be used to deliver results in a matter of minutes.

Six have now been approved in Australia.

"They're now being assessed for their utility and effectiveness by the medical expert panel," Health Minister Greg Hunt said.

COVID testing

The expert panel is investigating if they could be used to test asymptomatic frontline workers.

You can get up-to-date information from the Federal Government's Coronavirus Australia app, available on the App Store, Google Play and the Government's WhatsApp channel.

Beyond Blue's Coronavirus Mental Wellbeing Support Service is a 24/7 service free of charge to all Australians. Visit the site here or call 1800 512 348.

For coronavirus breaking news alerts and livestreams straight to your smartphone sign up to the 9News app and set notifications to on at the App Store or Google Play.

Source: 9News

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