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Supervised RAT for Travellers $29.95 @ Chemist Warehouse

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Lots of people will be doing supervised RATs for travel… some countries only require them rather than PCR, while others allow recently recovered travellers to do them instead of PCRs. Histopath was offering $59 tests, but Chemist Warehouse is now beating them with $29.95 tests, saving us not just money, but also time (as there’s more Chemist Warehouse locations around). Apparently, it comes with an extra RAT to take home (according to the sign)… perhaps because the RightSign tests come in a set of 2 RATs.

I took the photo at the Hyde Park branch in Sydney. Not sure if it’s available at all branches. Can’t seem to find more info on their website, but it’s on their YouTube page: https://youtu.be/YokX195XW5A

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  • +1

    Not sure what they mean, but according to Singapore requirement, it stated that it must be professionally administered. So I'm thinking that this has to be done professionally with a pathology lab and someone has to do it for you. This supervised is just the pharmacist watching you do it and verify the info is correct. Which countries required just supervised?

    • Think PCRs usually need to be done at pathology labs, but not necessarily RATs. I think the chemist might administer it. However, there are also virtually supervised self administered RATs that are accepted these days.

      https://www.rafflesmedicalgroup.com/raffles-connect/virtuall...

      • “ You would need to be a Singapore Citizen, Permanent Resident, or Work Pass Holder.”

        • I think that’s if you want to do the virtually supervised one offered in Singapore. By the earlier comment, I just meant Singapore is even accepting virtually supervised ones. The chemist warehouse one is an in person supervised one.

    • +15

      I did my test at Chemist warehouse and used it to enter Singapore as visitor.

      • +1

        Wow cool, so did you upload it into their app or just show the paperwork at immigration. I'm going to Singapore soon so was seeing if this is ok. Did the chemist do it for you or do you do it in front of the chemist yourself?

        • Just showed the certificate during check in. Only vaccination certificate was looked at immigration, no need to upload anywhere.

          You have to do the test yourself, pharmacist will just give instructions on how to do it and note result.

          • +1

            @karma25: Thanks mate, like I thought, but on the SIngapore website (ICA), it stated that the test has to be administered professionally, so wasn't so sure about that. But I guess if immigration doesn't care about it, all good then.

      • +1

        That's awesome, wish I knew earlier! I paid $64 to have mine done for sing trip by a pathology clinic because I was unsure of supervised vs administered wording.

    • +5

      Isn't a pharmacist a professional….they give you the vaccine, stands to reason they can give you a test for the virus too.

      • -2

        Depends if it’s the registered pharmacist supervising or just a sales staff.

      • -3

        It's funny how the role of a pharmacist is changing.
        I would trust a pharmacist far less for giving an injection than a nurse.
        I would also say they would do a pathology test worse than pathologist, but some of these pathologist seem like overseas workers just trying to get a job and have nfo how to perform these tests

        • +20

          On average a pharmacist has 5+ years of medical knowledge plus additional courses to specialise in vaccination administration to do.

          Enrolled nurses need only 1.5 years of training (and product knowledge) to administer vaccines, and a pathology worker 6 months study to do the testing.

          ~

          Not saying these people aren't skilled at what they're doing, but you're underestimating hard working medical professionals.

          • +8

            @Deadalready: As an FYI, I have a close friend who is a pharmacist, i'm an RN myself, and a close friend who is also a doctor.
            We have gone through our course all at similar times and know the scope of each role fairly well.
            My feelings still stand that a trained nurse would more likely give an injection safer than a pharmacist as its their bread and butter, they administer medications all the time. (Obviously there will be good and bad workers in each industry, but generally speaking)
            The pharmacists similarly would be specialists in identifying drug incompatibilities and contraindications as their portfolio looks at medication safety and the safe prescription/dispensing of them.
            Doctors also can give the medications but are the least qualified in administering of them, as their course/program looks at physiological issues and managing them with things such as medication prescription.

            • +6

              @maverickjohn: I agree that pharmacists are generally almost completely non-clinical
              They are excellent at managing drug-drug and drug-condition interactions.
              Nurses are excellent at administering intramuscular(IM) and subcutaneous(SC) injections.
              Also doing capillary blood testing of glucose and INR levels.
              BUT
              Your comment about a medical degree is both true and irrelevant.
              While the medical degree is didactic and non-practical, for the last 20 years, no doctor is unleashed on the "out of hospital" public without at least 2-3 hospital training.
              I know, because I'm a doctor.
              In those first couple of years, every doctor becomes proficient at IM/SC injections. That is trivial.
              But they also become experienced in inserting cannulas into veins, tubes into pleural cavities, needles into the thecal space of the spine (lumbar puncture), catheters into bladders.
              In later years I inserted lines into major chest veins to the heart, tiny cannulas into scalp veins of premature neonates, needles into nerve plexuses for local anaesthesia, tubes into tracheas for ventilation, cannulas into arteries for BP monitoring.
              "Doctors also can give the medications but are the least qualified in administering of them"
              Really ?
              It reminds of the quote from Sam Colt.
              Doctors "may" not do the bulk of vaccinations, not because they cannot (they are overqualified for it), but because it is more efficient to deputise that duty.
              https://youtu.be/9zY2558He3c?t=193

              • @dogboy88k: Very different arguments you are having there.
                IV cannula's, Arterial lines, intrathecal lines are skills the doctor are trained for and again would be better than most at doing them.
                Their training and practice has very little in regards to administering medications.
                Its always going back to the scope of the role, and in most cases the medical officers scope isn't to be giving the medications and hence why nurses came about, to assist in those tasks and allow the medical staff prioritise assessing and managing the patients, the roles have blurred more and more over time but remains that medication administration is predominantly a nursing task.
                Look back to your time as a PGY1 till your current position, and recall how often you have administered medications. In all fairness how comfortable would you be in administering an IM medication. Even if you are comfortable to do it, that's not necessarily the case for the large proportion of medical staff.
                Their in hospital training is to focus on disease management, assessments, inserting those lovely cannulas and IDC's, and learning how to associate presenting symptoms with history taking and working on a diagnosis.
                I also know because i assist JMO with their orientation in Cardiology. If a doctor is keen to administer medications i would support them as my role as a CNE would be to help anyone on the floor wanting to do it. as long as their AHPRA registration allows for it.

                • @maverickjohn: Why are you talking about hospital based trainees ?
                  It sounds like you are hospital based. I think your concept of doctors is very skewed towards junior doctors in hospital.
                  If we are talking about vaccination, for the general public, in an outpatient environment, we are talking about general practitioners.
                  I am a general practitioner.
                  I have run COVID and Influenza vaccination clinics where we administer 10-12 per hour.
                  Surely you would have to agree that administering an IM/SC injection is a trivial task.
                  To speak as if there is a skill gradient which would make someone good or bad at it is overstating the skill required.

                  • @dogboy88k: Yep Hospital based, Im not sure if its the same for all gp but their origins were hospital based. I think a new set of skills would be required for GP hence why you would be an expert.
                    IM injections may seem trivial but those little processes such as drawing back before injecting to know you havent hit a vessel can be the difference between an injection beinf IV for example and IM
                    Also mapping the deltoid muscle from the humeral/acromion joint to ensure you avoid a vascular area are all the skills we try to teach as standard practice.
                    It may seem trivial but these governance processes exist for a reason and to ensure complications dont happen

                    • +1

                      @maverickjohn: There is no need to draw back.
                      https://immunisationhandbook.health.gov.au/vaccination-proce...

                      "Intramuscular injection technique18,19
                      For intramuscular injection, use a 25 mm needle in most cases (see Table. Recommended needle size, length and angle for administering vaccines).
                      Depending on the injection site, position the limb to relax the muscle that the vaccine is being injected into.
                      Pierce the skin at a 90° angle, so the needle can be safely inserted deep into the muscle layer.20 If the injection angle is >70°, the needle should reach the muscle layer.21
                      If using a 25 gauge needle for an intramuscular vaccination, inject the vaccine slowly over a count of 5 seconds. This avoids injection pain and muscle trauma (see Table. Recommended needle size, length and angle for administering vaccines).
                      It is not necessary to draw back on the syringe plunger before injecting a vaccine.14 However, if you have done this and a flash of blood appears in the needle hub, withdraw the needle and select a new site for injection.22
                      Ensure that the vaccine is deposited into the muscle and not into the subcutaneous layer. For most vaccines, this minimises local adverse events and improves immunogenicity.14,23-26 "

                      • @dogboy88k: To mitigate that, staff should know the exact region. So I assume staff are trained in mapping the area properly before injecting. I can see they have a guide on the immunisation website to identify where to inject.
                        (Again a skill set which would have been acquired in your specialty field.)
                        Anyway i'll go back to the original reason why i mentioned this, and it was just due to the role scope for nursing staff being primarily medication administration hence why i said they were most qualified. (I also mentioned that in some cases you would have medical and pharmacists who are brilliant in administering meds, but just going off the general role scope).
                        I appreciate your input in this and do acknowledge that the GP network are exceptionally brilliant with medication administration particularly the ones without nursing support as the onus is on them to take all roles.

                        • +1

                          @maverickjohn: My counter point to the above is that the "best" person to administer medication would be the person who is best at both the delivery as well as management of complications. I think I'd much rather have an anaphylaxis in the presence of @dogboy88k.

                          • @Momotsuki: Lol that's fair enough. Your call. I'm not here to dismiss anyone. I can tell you that you may not want to be with an Rn like me. However, you limit your option of being with an advanced life support clinician who frequently acts as a team leader and teaches advanced life support to nurses and doctors.
                            Just don't be too quick to judge

        • +3

          Wait until you find out the pharmacy guild is lobbying the government to allow pharmacists to diagnose, manage and prescribe every medication, for every condition, standing in line with people around listening on 🤯

          • @Milkywayss:

            standing in line with people around listening on

            Obviously there would be a treatment room for this sort of thing.

            • +1

              @recycledrevenge: I've been to the chemist, stood in line to present my script, while I listened to people in front of me, talking over the counter, about rashes, vaginal itches, urinary frequency etc.
              Not surprisingly, they always leave, having been sold something.
              The most common pharmacy work flow for patient management is not in a treatment room.

            • +1

              @recycledrevenge: They don’t use private rooms when treating UTI’s as part of the current “trial” in Queensland (that the guild and QUT refuse to release any results about). Not surprisingly young women don’t openly discuss their sexual history with other customers listening in.

        • +2

          The person doing your PCR isn't a pathologist.

          For most of the pandemic I assume they would have been phlebotomists. As they would be who is usually employed at a local pathology place to take blood.

          • @kulprit: Correct, i incorrectly used the word pathologist there as they are the medical specialist in the industry

    • +1

      I know that Germany requires supervised rats. A lot cheaper through German websites. Booked one in for 4.99 euros

      • +1

        That's great price. Can you please share link for German site?

      • Share link. Send pics.

    • +2

      Singapore only requires a test if it is the destination country. If you are transiting through, it is not needed.

  • +1

    https://covid19.govt.nz/international-travel/travel-to-new-z...

    ^~ to go visit our neighbours… You can do a supervised as long as they fill out all the proper paperwork..

    If you had a RAT or LAMP:

    • either the name of the health professional that supervised the test, including either a letterhead or stamp confirming the supervisor’s name, occupation and employer

    • or the name of the pharmacy, laboratory, healthcare entity, telehealth service, community-based or airport-based testing station that supervised the test

  • +37

    FYI (I'm a GP) - If you want your GP to do this, we can (at least at our practice) but you aren't eligible for a Medicare rebate ($39) plus any gap payments (although plenty of dodgier GPs would bill Medicare). We also don't include the RAT. You're better off at a pharmacy.

    The caveat to this is if you also request some other healthcare/advice, which can include how to travel safely (vaccinations, safe food handling etc). If we discuss that for at least five minutes, you can technically access the $39 Medicare rebate.

    I'm not condoning ripping off Medicare (I don't think tax payers should be paying for travel RATs). I do genuinely think it's worth checking in with your GP about travel vaccinations, travelling with your medications, emergency medical packs etc at least a month before travelling overseas.

  • +2

    $30 for someone to watch you do a $2 RAT and record the result, sounds like a good deal.

    • +3

      Guess that's a fair price to have to view your snot.

    • +4

      Where are you getting $2 rats? On average it's about $10 a test (at consumer level).

      • Where are you paying $10 per test?? Using the RAT tag average is about $5 a test

    • +3

      You obviously haven’t paid $150 to a Notary Public to just look at a document or witness you signing and then affix a seal or stamp.

      You want a legally binding document from a health professional and have a medical test supplied and performed for you and you begrudge $30 ?

  • +2

    FYI - not all chemist warehouses do this. Some have chosen not to.

    • +1

      True, I called all stores nearby me and only 1 store was doing it. They need to have isolated space to conduct the test and a special yellow bin for medical waste.

    • +11

      Where did you do that?

      I don't think it's unreasonable to charge to supervise a RAT. Pharmacists are very qualified health professionals and their time is valuable. They're not a charity, but I can see the value in doing it out of good will for their regular customers.

  • -3

    Travelling to NZ today and they would only accept a 'registered' $80.00 PCR test.

    • Are you sure tha this the only test they will take? This is from the NZ covid site:

      You need a test even if you have been vaccinated for COVID-19. Plan when to get your test and results as they must be:

      • no more than 48 hours before you depart if you have a PCR test
      • no more than 24 hours before you depart if you have a supervised RAT or supervised LAMP test.

      https://covid19.govt.nz/international-travel/travel-with-aus...

    • Please tell more detail, I’m going in a month.

    • +1

      From the NZ govt website:

      Most travellers entering New Zealand from 28 February 2022 must provide evidence of a negative COVID-19 result from one of these tests:

      a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test administered no more than 48 hours before the scheduled departure of your first international flight to New Zealand, or

      supervised rapid antigen test (RAT) administered no more than 24 hours before the scheduled departure of your first international flight to New Zealand, or

      a supervised loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) test administered no more than 24 hours before the scheduled departure of your first international flight to New Zealand.

      You must make sure that the testing provider you choose can provide your test results with acceptable pre-departure documentation to the specified standard required by the New Zealand Government.

  • Thanks… I thought that I heard a radio ad a few weeks ago, but no sign at my local warehouse.

  • +3

    I have to say, thank god I'm not working for chemist warehouse.
    They're already overworked, underpaid and highly stressed, adding this on top is a nightmare.

  • +2

    Just a heads up.. I've noticed each Chemistwarehouse has a certain 1hr window per day they do this.

    I'm heading overseas shortly myself which has a requirement for a supervised RAT 24hrs before check-in.. so I called 2 stores and one had something like 10am-11am doing these and the other being 4pm-5pm.. so I've got a bit of a back up in case the first store happens to be busy or something..

    Its quite risky leaving requirements like this to the very last hr then not being able to get them.. plan ahead don't just show up expecting its doable there and then!

  • Called a few stores in my area and they did not do it. The only one that did was charging $20 for the supervision only plus the standard cost of the RAT test $15.99 for 2. It seems like the price of the supervision is not standard.

  • +4

    Heading to NZ today. FYI, I called around and found a pharmacist in Richmond currently doing $5 supervised/certified RATs with BYO.
    1/246 Bridge Rd, Richmond, VIC
    https://g.co/kgs/qdGkMF

    • Does the pharmacist give you a document to show name, passport #, result, etc?

  • +1

    is this accepted for flights to Fiji and the USA?

    • Supervised RAT testing is promoted on quite a few US travel websites, so Usa 100% accepts them. Fiji should be able to accept them too based on their website. If you transit in Nadi, you don't need to get tested though (they confirmed this via phone).

      To travel to Fiji, simply show evidence of the following at check-in before your departure flight.
      - Proof of full vaccination
      - A negative pre-departure COVID test (PCR - 48hrs /RAT 24hrs before flight)
      - Travel Insurance
      - Pre-booked in-country RAT

      https://www.cnbc.com/2022/02/22/what-its-like-to-self-test-f...

  • RT-PCR is the standard.

    • +5

      yeah but why pay for a more expensive pre-travel test if not required?

      this is for travellers with no symptoms only.

      if you have symptoms, you should not travel and instead get a free PCR test if available.

  • Irrespective if you have symptoms or not, the requirement is to test negative 48 hours to 72 hours at the airport.
    You need to check the country where you will going about their requirements but majority requires a PCR result in digital or paper form with your details, passport details etc. Getting a free PCR test will not provide you this information.
    You can be asymptomatic and still be positive that's why testing is required.
    As an example - For Fiji, this is their requirement.

    Accepted COVID-19 test results
    Your COVID-19 test result can be paper-based or electronic, and meet the following mandatory requirements:

    travellers name and date of birth;
    test result (such as ‘negative’ or ‘not detected’);
    method of test conducted e.g., PCR/nucleic acid amplification test (NAA) or RAT;
    type of specimen collected;
    brand and manufacturer of the test (for RAT tests);
    date of specimen collection for the accepted COVID-19 test; and
    date of test that the specimen for the test was collected, and the test was carried out by or under the supervision of and, signed by an authorised person (see below).
    If this information is not provided, you will not be able to check in and board the aircraft.

    • USA, Fiji and many other countries now allow RAT for travel

      Some countries like UK and France don't require tests at all (if fully vaccinated)

      Australia will also drop the pre-departure testing from 18 April (if fully vaccinated)

      • Travellers to Australia. If from Australia, we have to follow the guidelines of the destination country.

        From 18 April 2022 travellers to Australia will no longer be required to undertake a COVID-19 pre-departure test before boarding their flight.

        • Yes, many destination countries overseas now accept RAT! Some don't even require any test at all!

          • @donotuse: Still have to pay for the RAT though vs being free.

            • @nightelves: Thanks to Scumo. Other countries provide RATs for free.

              • @Sleeperagent: Other countries don't provide free tests for travel.

                Don't need free RATs, it's a wasteful spending of taxpayers' money. It's time we lived with Covid like the flu. Well done ScoMo!

            • @nightelves: Travel testing is never meant to be free. Travel testing is only for those with no symptoms.

              If you have symptoms, you should not travel, and you can still get free PCR tests.

  • Anyone knows which stores do these in QLD?

    • Same here 😊

  • +2

    Has anyone had success using this documentation to travel to the US?

    • On the same boat - we travel in June and wondering if this supervised test is enough to enter the USA

      • Can confirm it worked! We are in the US atm

  • If it’s helpful in the outer eastern suburbs of Melbourne - Chirnside, lilydale, and box hill south do it. They required a booking which is by phone.

  • Having a hard time finding a Chemist Warehouse in Victoria that does the test on Saturday. Finally called Footscray and they have a slot phew

  • Bali still requires PCR before entry.

    Hoping for a change for June 1.

    • Change made ;)

  • +1

    https://rsvp.chemistwarehouse.com.au/rat
    Called customer service and they helped me to find the above website. You can locate which store does it, but they don’t take bookings, so call before you go.

  • Are they still doing it???

  • Testifly.com.au charging $50

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