COVID-19 rapid testing kits are available for the vulnerable, high risk

QUICK RESPONSE: Rapid COVID-19 testing kits have become available to high risk people in Western NSW. Photo: SHUTTERSTOCK
QUICK RESPONSE: Rapid COVID-19 testing kits have become available to high risk people in Western NSW. Photo: SHUTTERSTOCK

HIGH risk and vulnerable people are now receiving rapid result coronavirus testing in Bathurst, Dubbo, Lithgow and Orange.

The rapid testing kits can return results in just a few hours and the four Central West locations are among 37 NSW Health Pathology labs in NSW with the technology.

Until now there was a return time for results of between 48 to 72 hours due to thousands of tests being conducted each day.

A NSW Health Pathology spokeswoman said rapid testing is used for high risk and priority cases where an urgent diagnosis is needed.

"These include acutely unwell patients, those with pre-existing or chronic health conditions, or aged care residents," she said.

The spokeswoman said those being tested must meet certain clinical criteria to be allocated a rapid test.

We're always prioritising the positive test results first.

NSW Health Pathology spokeswoman

For people keen to get quicker results, but who did not meet the clinical criteria, they are able to nominate to receive their result via text.

This can ensure that the result is received within 24 to 48 hours.

"We're always prioritising the positive test results first," the spokeswoman said.

"This is key because then any outbreak or cluster is able to be identified quickly."

The spokeswoman said NSW Health Pathology reviews its statewide testing network daily to ensure reliable, timely testing is available where it is needed and will continue to expand its testing capabilities to match evolving needs.

NSW Health Pathology has provided COVID-19 testing since the outset of the pandemic and can perform more than 9000 diagnostic tests per day.

"This gives NSW one of the highest testing rates in the world," she said.

Meanwhile, 14 new COVID-19 cases were detected in NSW in the 24 hours to 8pm on June 30, all of these cases are returned travellers who are in hotel quarantine.

There has been a total of 3203 positive COVID-19 tests in NSW, with 2787 people now recovered from the virus.

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This story Rapid virus testing is targeting the vulnerable, high risk first appeared on Lithgow Mercury.