Use of Rapid Antigen Testing for SARS-CoV-2 in Remote Communities — Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta Region

A Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) examined the use of rapid point-of-care antigen testing in the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta Region of Alaska. Controlling the spread of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, in Alaska is challenging in rural areas due to the slow turnaround times for SARS-CoV-2 test results, attributable to the need to transport specimens to testing facilities. Alaska includes many remote and isolated villages with small populations (ranging from 15 to >1,000 persons) that are accessible only by air from larger communities. Rapid point-of-care antigen testing reduces the turn-around time and might be a valuable tool in lowering transmission of SARS-CoV-2 in rural communities by facilitating rapid isolation and quarantine. Read more.