UVRI explains how truck driver tested positive in Uganda, negative in Kenya

The Uganda Virus Research Institute (UVRI) has explained circumstances under which a Kenyan truck driver who tested positive in Uganda emerged negative during subsequent tests in Kenya.

The standard news media of Kenya reported on Thursday that Kenya Medical Research Institute had overturned COVID-19 test results on a Kenyan long-distance truck driver who tested positive in Uganda while on transit a fortnight ago.

The patient was tested at the Malaba border on May 3 while on his way to Tororo. On his way back to Mombasa on May 7, the Ugandan authorities informed Kenya that he was positive.

However, a retest conducted by the Kenyan authorities showed no signs of the virus, hence overturning the Ugandan result casting doubt on the Ugandan results.

The Executive Director of UVRI, Prof Pontiano Kaleebu, said on Thursday that scientifically, it is possible for someone to test positive and have a negative result afterwards.

Positivity comes when viraemia, which is the presence of viruses in the blood goes up and that usually comes two or three days after infection. However, after 14 days the virus goes down, which however doesn’t mean that someone is negative until antibody tests prove so,” he saoid.

Prof Kaleebu added that the same patient had a positive result at the third round of testing in Kenya.

So far 63 patients have recovered from Covid-19 in Uganda. The country’s caseload stands at 203, with more than 143 cases recorded from truck drivers

Story by Daily Monitor 


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