For all those that get a kick out of plunging a Q tip as deep into your ear canal as physically possible, here’s news that’s sure to light your fire. Australians will soon be able to take a COVID test from home, after the federal government approved for do-it-yourself tests to be made available from November 1.
The rapid antigen tests, which provide a result in just 20 minutes, have been widely available for at-home use worldwide for some time now. The testing has already been rolled out in select environments across Australia, including age care homes and quarantine facilities.
Over 30 different COVID tests have been approved for supervised use, which are expected to be made available for at-home use on the approval of the Therapeutic Goods Administration.
Health Minister Greg Hunt is optimistic about the at-home testing option, noting that it would help Australians adapt to living with the virus.
“One of the critical parts of the national plan is to make sure that people will be able to go about their daily activities safely,” he said. “So I am delighted that the TGA has now recommended that home testing will be available from the first of November.”
Minister Greg Hunt noted that it would be at state and territory leaders’ discretion whether they would allow at-home testing within their jurisdictions.
“We already have 33 tests that have been approved for use outside the home so I imagine they’ll be able to be converted,” Mr Hunt said.
“My hope is (they’ll be approved) as soon as possible after the first of November, but I won’t put a particular date because the TGA runs an independent safety and effectiveness testing process for each test.”