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Concerned About HIV Infection? Think Twice Before Buying A Self-test Kit Online.

Feb 23, 2018

While getting an HIV test at a clinic in Singapore is straightforward, some people apparently prefer self-diagnosis.

Which is perhaps why a simple search online turns up at least 40 from local suppliers' advertisements for self-test human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) kits which promise accuracy, privacy and convenience. 

They also assure speed, with a result promised within 20 to 30 minutes. All that is needed is a mouth swab or blood sample.The catch? The suppliers of the kits are not licensed.

Currently, such tests are only allowed to be conducted in a clinic, the Health Sciences Authority (HSA) and Ministry of Health (MOH) told Channel NewsAsia. 

They said this is to ensure that potential carriers of the HIV virus, which causes Aids and is often transmitted sexually, receive comprehensive care. 

MOH has also listed 10 clinics and sites where members of the public can be tested anonymously. At these sites, people are assigned numbers instead of having to provide their personal particulars.

HSA said only dealers that it licenses are allowed to import and supply HIV test kits. Such test kits are required to be registered by HSA as medical devices prior to import and supply under the Health Products Act, a spokesperson said.