Health Ministry launches new HIV/AIDS testing method

On 2 December 2017 at 09:34

The Ministry of Health has launched a new HIV/AIDS virus self-testing method that will help people know their health status without attending hospitals.

Dubbed ‘OraQuick HIV Self-Test’, is an oral swab used for testing and requires no blood. By collecting oral fluid from your gums, you collect fluid similar to that used in blood testing.

So, the OraQuick Test detects antibodies for HIV, not the virus itself.

Using the OraQuick HIV Self-Test, people swipe the test swab along their upper gums once and at lower gums once. Then they insert the swab inside the test tube provided and get results within 20 to 40 minutes.

HIV antibodies from oral fluid are collected through the swab.

Once the device is inserted into the test tube, the oral fluid mixes with the liquid and moves up the test stick.

If C-Line on the tube turns dark it confirms the test is working properly. If no C-Line appears, the test is not working.

If only C-Line appears, the test is negative.

HIV antibodies collecting at the T-Line on the tube indicates the test is positive.

The launching of the device coincided with the celebration of international AIDS day marked on 1st December every year.

The device is sold at Rwf5000 and found in all pharmacies.

Speaking at the event in Kigali, the Minister of Health, Dr. Diane Gashumba said the new system aims at helping people know their health status easily.

“We are launching a new HIV/AIDS self-testing device. It is another approach that the government wants to implement to be able to raise numbers of people aware of their health status. When people get know their health status on time especially those who find themselves HIV positive, they consider using antiretroviral therapy,” she said.

Speaking to IGIHE, Edourd Munyemana, a city resident said that the new method will help especially youth as they rarely visit health centers for HIV/AIDS test.

OraQuick HIV Self-Test
The Minister of Health, Dr. Diane Gashumba speaks at the event