CHARLOTTE – Mecklenburg County Public Health is warning residents that some rapid tests for COVID-19 may provide misleading results, giving a false sense of security they are safe and not infectious.
“There is at least one non-FDA approved test being used in our community,” Public Health Director Gibbie Harris said. “It has a very low sensitivity early in the illness which means a higher likelihood of a false negative result. This could increase the risk that an infectious person would spread the disease.”
The N.C. Department of Health and Human Services does not accept positive results from non-FDA approved tests. Positive results could be due to current or past infections from viruses other than COVID-19.
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“Accurate, rapid testing is coming,” Harris said. “However, this test is probably doing more harm than good right now.”
Harris said residents who have symptoms of COVID-19, such as fever, coughing and shortness of breath, should reach out to their healthcare provider or Mecklenburg County Public Health.
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