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[LISTEN] Lab explains radio jock's false positive Covid-19 result

28 May 2020 2:28 PM
Tags:
SABC
testing
false positive
Coronavirus
Covid 19
Tshatha Ngobe
Ukhozi FM

Award-winning presenter Tshatha Ngobe announced to Ukhozi FM listeners on Wednesday that he had tested positive for coronavirus.

The Durban-base laboratory at the centre of the false-positive Covid-19 test result of an Ukhozi FM DJ says human error was to blame.

Award-winning presenter Tshatha Ngobe told listeners on Wednesday that he had tested positive for the virus after taking a test on Tuesday.

The SABC subsequently released a statement saying the jock was in quarantine and the premises from which he had been broadcasting temporarily closed for decontamination.

However, Ngobe was later contacted by JDJ Diagnostics to say the result was a false positive and that his test result was in fact negative.

Speaking to the Midday Report Professor Pierre Durand, a consultant molecular pathologist associated with JDJ Diagnostics explains how the tests are carried out, and how the error was made:

Essentially it tests to see if there are viral genes on the swab...that means that there seems to be virus present...but it can be a very tricky test.

Prof Pierre Durand, Consultant molecular pathologist - JDJ Diagnostics

You get false positives and you get false negatives...some hospitals even insist you get tested at two different times.

Prof Pierre Durand, Consultant molecular pathologist - JDJ Diagnostics

In this particular case, the nurse took a sample and they processed it and it was very weakly positive...

Prof Pierre Durand, Consultant molecular pathologist - JDJ Diagnostics

So JDJ wants to test it a couple of times to see whether it's a false positive or a false negative...

Prof Pierre Durand, Consultant molecular pathologist - JDJ Diagnostics

The employee released the presumptive result - some laboratories would just release _that _result - without asking the pathologist first and that is where the system failed.

Prof Pierre Durand, Consultant molecular pathologist - JDJ Diagnostics

Listen to the full explanation below:


28 May 2020 2:28 PM
Tags:
SABC
testing
false positive
Coronavirus
Covid 19
Tshatha Ngobe
Ukhozi FM

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