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Health says allowing antigen testing in pharmacies is a stand-alone jurisdiction but only for screening

Publication: Thursday December 31, 2020 4:45 PM

Health responds to the request of the Community of Madrid to perform rapid antigenic tests in pharmacies in the region, declaring that the authorization of these tests in pharmacy offices is a regional competence.

In a letter addressed to the Minister of Health of Madrid, to which laSexta had access, Salvador Illa affirms that “the authorization to carry out diagnostic tests for active infection by SARSCoV-2 in pharmacy offices would go to the communities. autonomous ”.

However, Illa recalls that screening “could only be considered in certain situations of high transmission rate in a given geographical area or in the target population for screening”, and that antigenic tests should only be used when the resources of PCR are limited. .

Likewise, the letter insists that antigenic testing should be performed, according to the manufacturer’s instructions, to “persons with clinical and / or epidemiological criteria for COVID-19, such as symptomatic persons, close contacts of confirmed asymptomatic cases, and asymptomatic people in settings at high risk of transmission and epidemiology “.

Only for screening and not available for free

Thus, the Minister considers that such screening in risk areas can be understood as “extraordinary measures” within the framework of a community public health program, but that the proposal of any citizen wishing to take a test could do so by pharmacy “would not be included” in the detection strategy or in the instructions given by the manufacturer.

Sources from the Community of Madrid to LaSexta criticized the contents of the letter, while the government only allows tests to be carried out in areas with high transmission and the response comes two months late, to say that this competition is autonomous. From the Community they believe that the minister is “disoriented” and that he does not know how the virus works, advocating the same regional sources, to facilitate tests for the population.

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