Rapid COVID-19 tests for Phase 3

by | December 31, 2020

DTAP Clinic at Novena offers these tests for public events and travel requirements.

DTAP Clinic has launched the Rapid COVID-19 Antigen and Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests at its Novena Clinic, equipped with a “BioSafety Cabinet”.

In preparation for Singapore’s Phase 3, where larger-scale events, seminars, conferences, entertainment and sports events require on-site rapid COVID-19 testing, DTAP’s Rapid COVID-19 Antigen tests are approved by the Health Sciences Authority (HSA) and the Ministry of Health (MOH), with more than 95 percent sensitivity and 99 percent specificity. The total cost of the Antigen test is S$50, inclusive of GST and consultation.

During the Rapid COVID-19 Antigen test, a small cotton swab will be inserted into each nostril and left inside for a few seconds. The entire process will last for about 30 seconds or less, with slight discomfort but no pain. Patients will be notified of their results within 30 minutes.

DTAP’s Novena clinic is prepped with a “BioSafety Cabinet” to store and run the test samples. This is an enclosed, ventilated laboratory workspace for staff to work safely with materials which may be potentially contaminated with pathogens. Samples taken from patients are processed in this special equipment to prevent aerosols (tiny droplets) from escaping into the clinic. This additional step further protects patients as well as staff from exposure to test samples.

Apart from the “BioSafety Cabinet” to safely store test samples, safe distancing practices are also strictly adhered to in the clinics. Patients are allowed to remove their masks only during the swabbing of the nostrils for test sample acquisition. Doctors or staff in the same room where the swab is taken will be wearing full personal protective equipment including head net, face shield, N95 mask, waterproof gown and gloves. The surfaces of tables, chairs and the area where the swab is taken, is cleaned after every patient with disinfectant wipes. In addition, the room will be thoroughly cleaned with disinfectant every two hours.

Visitors do not need to prepare anything prior to visiting the DTAP Novena clinic, and are strongly advised not to clean their nose with any substance prior to testing as results may be inaccurate. It is recommended for visitors to make a prior appointment by calling the clinic at 6397 2095 to ensure sufficient time for the clinic to prepare for safe distancing adherence for visitors, staff and patients.

In accordance with MOH guidelines, persons tested positive with an Antigen test are required by law to self-isolate immediately, and seek a confirmatory COVID-19 PCR swab test as soon as possible. A compulsory three-day medical leave will be issued by a doctor and they must not leave their homes until the PCR test results are returned.

Besides those who have been tested positive on the Rapid COVID-19 Antigen test, COVID-19 PCR testing is required for travellers before departure as well. The process of the PCR test is the same as the Rapid Antigen test, and is also available at DTAP’s Novena clinic.

After swabbing, PCR test results will be available the next working day. MOH will be notified of the results, if positive, and MOH officers will contact such persons to advise them on further actions. While waiting for the results, they are required by law not to leave their homes. The PCR test costs S$171.20, inclusive of GST.


(** PHOTO CREDIT: Unsplash/Mufid Majnun)


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