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Department of Health Announce Update in Testing Protocols

As of February 6, 2022 Saint Lucia has diagnosed a total of 21, 691 cases in-country, with 2,817 active cases and 341 deaths. We are in the third year of managing COVID-19 with our 5th wave. As we move from the various phases of the COVID-19 outbreak in country, we continuously review the various protocols. The quarantine and isolation protocol was recently updated and the testing protocol is now updated effective February 5, 2022 in an effort to make testing more accessible.

The polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test and rapid or antigen test are both approved tests for use in-country. PCR tests are approved for diagnostic purposes and the antigen test for screening and surveillance. The Ezra Long Laboratory of the OKEU Hospital, The Forensic Laboratory and Laboratory Services and Consultations Limited are authorized to perform PCR testing. Pharmacies, pharmacy distributors, laboratories and health service providers may import the following approved antigen tests with notification through the Drug Inspector:

– Fora COVID-19 Antigen test

– Abbot Panbio COVID-19 Antigen Test

– SD Bioscience Standard Q

– CareStart COVID-19 Antigen Test

– Sure Status COVID-19 Antigen Card Test

– Standard Q COVID-19 Antigen Test

Antigen testing must be supervised by a health professional, used as a screening tool, confirmed with a PCR test and can be used for exit travel purposes. The positive antigen test results should be reported to the Epidemiology Unit of the Ministry of Health, Wellness and Elderly Affairs within 24 hours. At this time, the Government of Saint Lucia does not recommend self-swabbing at home using the rapid antigen tests. Persons are encouraged to visit a respiratory clinic or laboratory to get tested for COVID-19 by a health professional.

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