Such a strategy could lead to “personalized stay-at-home orders” without shutting down restaurants, bars, retail stores and schools, the authors said.
When it came to curbing spread, they found that frequency and turnaround time are much more important than test sensitivity.
In other scenarios, when the amount of testing was the same, the rapid test always reduced infectiousness better than the slower, more sensitive PCR test.
That’s because about two-thirds of infected people have no symptoms and as they await their results, they continue to spread the virus.
Antigen tests require a relatively high viral load – about 1,000 times as much virus compared to the PCR test — to detect an infection.
Even if half of Americans tested themselves weekly and self-isolated if positive, the result would be profound, he said.
On Tuesday, the Food and Drug Administration approved the first at-home rapid test. »