National AIDS/STI Control Programme (NASCP) has approved the use of Wantai HIV 1&2 rapid test kit for use in testing of HIV/AIDS algorithm after its sensitivity, specificity and accuracy was established by relevant bodies.
NASCP informed that the evaluation was a cross sectional laboratory based performance characteristics with specimen sample size of 1,357 obtained from clients from six selected health facilities in each of the six geopolitical zones.
NASCAP National Coordinator, Araoye Segilola, explained that specimen were tested using the HIV test kits in the National testing algorithm before they were retrieved to the reference laboratory at the Public Health In-vitro Diagnostic Control Laboratory (PHIVDCL) in Yaba, Lagos.
She added: “At the PHIVDCL, the specimen were characterised and used to evaluate the Wantai HIV rapid test kit. Sensitivity, specificity, accuracy and the mean global rating scores of Wantai HIV rapid test kit was also determined. The sensitivity, specificity and accuracy of the test returned 99.6 per cent, 98.9 per cent and 99.3 per cent, respectively.
“Base on the above result, we recommended that Wantai HIV rapid test kit be included among the first line (screening) tests of the HIV testing algorithm.”
Head of Public Health Department, Federal Ministry of Health, Dr. Mildred Ene-Obong, appreciated the Evaluation Technical Working Group and National Laboratory Quality Assurance Team (NALQAT) for the rigorous and transparent evaluation exercise that led to the successful completion of Wantai HIV 1&2 rapid test kit.
Dr. Ene-Obong confirmed that all relevant agencies of government, notably, Medical Laboratory Science Council of Nigeria (MLSCN), National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), National Agency for the Control of AIDS (NACA), Nigeria Institute of Medical Research (NIMR), National Blood Transfusion Service (NBTS) and Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) contributed to the success of the evaluation exercise.
Meanwhile, the President, Global Bridge Healthcare Solutions (GBHS), Dr. Abel Ekpunobi, in a remarks during public presentation of the product in Abuja, expressed optimism that the product will herald an unprecedented changes in HIV testing in Nigeria, soliciting support for all stakeholders to ensure that the product is used as first line of the HIV testing algorithm.
Tony Adonye, from the NASCP laboratory who made a presentation on the product confirmed that it passsd through strict evaluation process in order to confirm the sensitivity, specificity and accuracy which returned 99.6 per cent, 98.9 per cent and 99.3 per cent, respectively.