Antigen testing still prohibited in South Australia
The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) is calling on the Marshall Government to amend current legislation which prohibits the use of rapid antigen testing in South Australia.
Current public health directions under the Emergency Management Act state that ‘a person must not use point-of-care antigen based or nucleic acid based tests as a tool to detect or diagnose COVID-19’.
PSA SA Branch President, Robyn Johns, said that amendments are well overdue, and South Australia risks falling behind the rest of the country.
“As rapid antigen testing becomes more prevalent across the nation, South Australia risks being left behind in our COVID-19 response if these legislative changes are not made.
“The benefits of antigen testing are clear, hence, why supermarket giants have recently announced they will be stocking tests for personal use as of next week. In the meantime, this out-of-date legislation is holding South Australia back.
“Whilst full vaccination decreases the risk of infection, pharmacists and pharmacy staff are not immune to isolation periods and resulting pharmacy closures. With other jurisdictions emerging from lockdowns and borders gradually reopening, we need to ensure we are using all the tools at our disposal to continue to detect COVID-19 in the community.
“Rapid antigen tests are key to ensuring pharmacies can remain open, and without these tests, the supply of essential medicines to the community may be jeopardised. We urge the Marshall Government to consider the dire impact such a scenario would have on regional communities.
“If these legislative roadblocks aren’t addressed immediately, we will fall behind the nation as we transition out of the pandemic – at the expense of those who need and deserve essential medicines,” Ms Johns said.
Media contact: PSA media 0424 777 463