Covid-19 Breath Test To Undergo Trial At Tuas Checkpoint
Currently, the most common way to test for Covid-19 in Singapore is through swabbing the back of the nose or throat.
Swab samples are then sent for the Antigen Rapid Test (ART) and/or Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR). While ART generates results in an hour, PCR results take up to 24 hours.
However, this will soon change for the better, thanks to Breathonix’s Covid-19 breath test.
The new technology generates test results within 60 seconds and has achieved more than 90% accuracy in its clinical trial.
Having received provisional authorisation from the Health Sciences Authority (HSA), the breathalysers will undergo trial at Tuas Checkpoint.
Fast & easy-to-use Covid-19 breath test
The BreFence Go Covid-19 Breath Test System is developed by Breathonix, a spin-off company from the National University of Singapore.
On Monday (24 May), in a joint statement, NUS and Breathonix announced their breathalyser has been provisionally approved by the HSA.
Compared to swab tests, the technology requires individuals to only blow into a disposable mouthpiece and is non-invasive.
The machine will then detect if the person is unwell through the person’s breath by analysing its compounds.
After which, the breath analysis generates a ‘positive or ‘negative’ result within one minute.
Those who test positive with the breathalyser will then undergo a PCR test to confirm the infection.
Breath test will undergo trial at Tuas Checkpoint
Adding to its speed and enhanced comfort is its efficacy, as the Covid-19 breath test boasts over 90% accuracy.
From Jun 2020 to Apr 2021, the breath test was trialled at the National Centre for Infectious Diseases (NCID) and Changi Airport.
After receiving provisional authorisation from the HSA, the breath test will undergo trial at Tuas Checkpoint in the coming days.
The land checkpoint will conduct breath analysis alongside the compulsory ART on incoming travellers.
More efficient means of mass testing
Faster detection of Covid-19 is essential in ring-fencing infections and contact tracing.
Therefore, Breathonix’s development is an exciting breakthrough, not to mention there’ll be less chance of getting your noses poked.
Hopefully, with successful trials at Tuas Checkpoint, the breathalyser will soon have a more widespread application.
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Featured image adapted from Facebook.