Praava Health is working to be as careful as we can in our work to ensure and maintain the highest international standard possible, especially as our country braves a public health crisis. Praava was founded on the belief that Bangladeshis deserve world class quality healthcare services, grounded in dignity and care, and empathy.
There is a lot of discussion regarding the accuracy of COVID-19 testing, and due to lack of trust in healthcare as a whole in Bangladesh, it can be easy to assume the worst. Like any diagnostic test, even at the best labs in the world, there is a chance that someone will have the virus but will test negative (false negative), or does not have the virus and will test positive (false positive).
Global data regarding the accuracy of COVID-19 PCR tests shows the following:
- COVID PCR tests have false-negative rates of between 2% and 29% (https://cutt.ly/RmDCbpD).
- International studies of PCR testing indicate an average false positive rate of around 2% (https://cutt.ly/DmDCYa8).
- If anyone tests positive but does not have symptoms, that does not immediately indicate that her or his result was a false positive – around 24% (https://cutt.ly/JmDC1y2) of all positive cases are asymptomatic.
- During this new surge, young people are testing positive but they do not show the classic symptoms of COVID-19
“Whether or not a person will get a false negative or false positive result depends on many factors,” said Dr. Zaheed Husain, Praava’s Senior Laboratory Director. “For example, if someone is tested too soon, his or her body may not have enough of the virus yet, which could cause a negative result one day, and a positive result the next. It is also possible to test positive one day and negative the next day — this does not necessarily mean the first test was a false positive; it might mean that the virus has passed through your body already.”
Test results must be guided by a doctor’s judgment to evaluate the context of symptoms and contact history. Any Patient who believes any report might be in error should immediately contact the lab where the test was done. As soon as Praava test reports are generated, Patients are informed through SMS and email how to reach out for questions or support.
The presence of new variants may make it difficult to detect the presence of the
virus. Praava Health’s process includes multiple target regions that are robust enough to detect circulating variants. Additionally, Praava is collaborating with a research foundation, CHRF, to determine which variants are captured in our COVID samples. Data from Praava is contributing to GISAID, a global, open-access repository of SARS-CoV-2 genome sequences.
Praava’s Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Simeen Majid Akhtar said, “During a global pandemic there are no words t
o console anyone, and no technicality or statistics is of value or meaning. All across the globe, there is so much loss and suffering – we can only reiterate that as a healthcare provider, we will continue to be as honest and transparent as possible to gain the trust of our Patients and be by their side.”