Press Release: Testing firm warns of fake COVID-19 testing risk
Your Sexual Health offers own advice on how to spot dangerous testing devices
Private STD testing provider, Your Sexual Health, has issued a stark warning to consumers over rip off COVID-19 tests currently doing the rounds in the UK. The company has offered its own advice on how to spot the tests following news the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) was investigating 14 cases of fake or unlicensed COVID-19 medical products.
The testing firm believes criminals will be looking to capitalise on delays to government testing and ever growing public anxiety over coronavirus.
Dr Rashid Bani, Medical Director for Your Sexual Health, thinks instant home blood tests that identify antibodies against COVID-19 could be a particular avenue that criminals will look to exploit. He said: “At the moment no instant blood test for COVID-19 is safe or licensed to be performed by anyone other than a trained healthcare professional. However, they’re relatively easy to get hold of and they’re cheap.”
“In the wrong hands, these tests could tell someone they’ve had COVID-19 inaccurately. This might lead them to return to work, they might start seeing elderly or vulnerable relatives and think they are immune or no risk to others. An inaccurate test would be a disaster waiting to happen and it could lead to unnecessary deaths.”
Due to their experience in the sexual health industry, Your Sexual Health is well aware of the dangers that fake or unlicensed medical tests pose. Dr Bani believes that as well as selling tests licensed for professional use only, it’s possible that criminals looking to profit from the pandemic could create COVID-19 tests that are completely fake or could sell tests for other conditions that look like coronavirus tests.
“At the moment, there are a lot of people worrying about whether it’s safe for them to work and provide for their family. The main thing these people want is a test that tells them they have already had coronavirus and can continue working,” says Dr Bani. “Imagine how dangerous that could be, yet these are simple devices to look at, it’s not beyond the realms of possibility that they could be faked.”
The warning from Your Sexual Health comes as the MHRA announced it was investigating 14 cases of fake COVID-19 tests and medications that were currently doing the rounds. At present no instant COVID-19 blood test is deemed safe or reliable to be carried out by anyone other than a medical professional. All tests should carry CE marking clearly displayed on the packaging.
Swab sample tests can be used to collect a sample remotely, but these are altogether different tests and results are reported by UKAS approved labs.
To find out more about Your Sexual Health or their COVID-19 testing products, visit yoursexualhealth.co.uk/covid-19-tests/ or contact them on 0161 660 2599.