• Shabana Asif Margalla Hospital, Taxila
  • Aashi Ahmed HITEC, IMS, NUMS, Rawalpindi
  • Ambreen Gul HITEC Institute of Medical sciences(IMS, Taxila) NUMS,Rawalpindi
  • Tariq Abbasi Ayub teaching hospital, Abbottabad




SARS-CoV-19, COVID-19, Rapid antigen detection, Reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction, sensitivity, Specificity


Background: Evidence on performance of Rapid Antigen Detection Tests to recognize SARS-CoV-2 symptomatic patients in our context is limited. This study was aimed to evaluate Panbio™ COVID-19 Ag Rapid Test Device (Abbott Diagnostics, Jena, Germany) in identifying SARS-CoV-2 infection in comparison with RT-PCR test. Methods: This cross-sectional validation study was carried out at Margalla Hospital, Taxila from October, 2020 to March, 2021. Three hundred and eighty-two participants of both gender and all ages, symptomatic for 3–4 days were included in this study. For each participant, two nasopharyngeal swabs were collected by trained lab technicians according to SOPs, one for Rapid Antigen Test and other for RT-PCR.Covid-19 antibodies were checked 4-6 weeks after symptoms among 77 randomly selected participants to further evaluate the performance of Rapid Antigen Test. Data was analyzed using SPSS-26. Results: The mean age of the participants was 43.1 years (SD= 15.9). More than half of participants were males (n=213%=55.8) and 169 (44.2%) were females. Sensitivity of Rapid Antigen Test was calculated to be 94.3%, whereas the specificity was 39.7%. Out of 34 RT-PCR negatives that were initially detected positive on Rapid Antigen Test, 33 demonstrated presence of COVID-19 antibodies. Conclusion: Panbio™ COVID-19 Ag Rapid Test was found to have 93.4% overall sensitivity and relatively low overall specificity (37.9%). Rapid antigen testing using Panbio™ COVID-19 Ag Rapid Test Device can be effectively used to scale up mass testing to interrupt transmissibility of COVID-19 infection by generating quick result.

Author Biographies

Shabana Asif, Margalla Hospital, Taxila

Dr Shabana Asif Consultant Pathologist Margalla Hospital, Taxila

Aashi Ahmed, HITEC, IMS, NUMS, Rawalpindi

Dr Aashi Mughal Associate Professor Department of Community Medicine

Ambreen Gul, HITEC Institute of Medical sciences(IMS, Taxila) NUMS,Rawalpindi

Assistant ProfessorBiochemistry department

Tariq Abbasi, Ayub teaching hospital, Abbottabad

Tariq Abbasi FCPS Chairperson; Anesthesia department Ayub teaching hospital, Abbottabad


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