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[WA] Free: COVID-19 RATs at Train Stations, Shopping Centres and Major Sporting Events @ WA Government


RATs are a quick and convenient way to detect COVID-19.

To support the WA community, 3 million more free RATs will be available for the Western Australian community at metro locations such as shopping centres, train stations and major events.

Pop-up locations in regional areas will come online from Monday 11 July.

If you are a close contact, please collect your free RATs from designated drive-through, metro and regional locations.

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  • +4

    My wife got positive after pcr though this rat test gave negative. That is probably one of the reason to give this out for free.

    • -2

      I forgot the West is slowly catching up, all in the East know that RATs aren't 100% accurate…

    • +1

      3 in the house with positive Covid PCR test and the swab rat kits all showed negative, nasal rat test kits showed positive results.

      RAT tests have been free in WA for a good while now either online via the government site or as the post has mentioned at certain shopping centres.

    • +2

      No, they're handing them out for free because the reliance for RATs is nowhere near as high as it was during the peak and they bought so many that literally millions of dollars worth of them will expire before they can be used at current rates. Just another tactic to try and save face / look generous in the process.

      Also, there's nothing free about these either when tax payers money has funded the initial spend.

      • They should buy the nasal rat test one then

      • +7

        Alright, let’s see how you would go with predicting the future if you were leading the government.

        People like you are just so ridiculous.

        Perhaps the analysis at the time showed that it made sense to purchase a lot of RATs, especially when supply was hard to come by and large organisations needed to commit to ordering.

        It’s because of armchair critics like you that politicians lie and obfuscate… because they will be criticised no matter what they do.

        • +2

          Regardless of which camp you believe in, I'd rather RATs in households and eventually up noses catching as many cases as possible.

        • damned if you do damned if you don't…..

          i'm glad no one has to line up 6hours in the hot sun for a PCR this year or struggle to find rats and have pay to pay $30 for one RAT at a petrol station..

        • I'm not claiming to be better by any stretch of the imagination, though I was involved in RAT modelling myself and we certainly don't have 5+ years stock on hand despite burn rates falling off a cliff in recent months.

          The volume that was purchased when compared to the requirements of the main customer (Health) is incredibly disproportionate.
          We've seen with literally everything during this pandemic (Gowns, Gloves, Contrast Media, N95s, etc.) that demand ramps up and supply lags by a few weeks, however once production kicks into gear there's a flood of that product to the market and prices tank. I can understand wanting to safeguard WA and ensure we don't run out, but to already have multiple years of RATs (which have a 2 year shelf life under ideal conditions.. I assure you their storage conditions are not ideal) so early on is just reckless no matter how you look at it.

          I honestly hope they're able to put them to good use before they expire as it would be such a shame to waste that much money when there's crucial services that are so desperate for funding to stay afloat.

          • +1

            @MrKnowItAll: Lol, try that again if you went through the shit show in the East. A week plus to get PCR results and absolutely no RAT in sight.

            Btw, Taiwan went though the surge after Perth starting in April/May, and they had shortages of RAT. The availability and lowering prices is precisely because the big ass orders ahead of time increasing the supply and forcing commercial importers to drop prices. There is no magic store of RAT out there just available for you to buy whenever you want.

            • @annarchon: I wouldn’t bother replying… people like this just don’t get it.

              They have no understanding of the complex detail, but DO have the platform to spout ignorant opinions.

              • @wormarts: I actually wasn't going to reply, especially when east and overseas got brought in, but to say there's no understanding.. I beg to differ.
                As I mentioned, my line of work was / is awfully similar in that I created usage modelling (within our own locations) and that was then used to purchase our own stockpile of tests (which wasn't easy when govt. got first preference and bought up nearly everything).
                Yes, we bought big and were aggressive in our approach, but we maintained realistic limits as to how far we went and monitored usage rates daily to ensure we adjusted our approach accordingly - trying to cancel orders when the market was flooded wasn't easy or possible in some cases so we have a little more than I'd like, but from an obsolescence perspective I see no risk. I also have a fairly good indication as to the levels that were purchased by Health.

                Self tests (oral / nasal) they can hand out to the general public but likely not fast enough unfortunately. The Point Of Care tests though (which require a healthcare professional to use) there's simply too many to get through before expiration - they'll end up in landfill eventually and I'd bet anything on that being the case.

                I just get frustrated when we're in such challenging times where the cost of living keeps rising, items are being removed from the PBL and funding for key services is stagnant or falling (to name a few issues).. and they're going to wind up throwing millions of taxpayer dollars literally into landfill - a massive waste when there's so many other things that would benefit from it.

                But in the meantime, I'll continue to collect my 'free' tests and use them as needed (as should everyone to minimise wastage and try ease their own pains with cost of living rising) but yeah it's a real shame about the eventual expiration and disposal that's on the horizon.

    • That's why we always keep 2 different brands in our house (and also 1 nose swab and 1 saliva version). When we got positive in the house, all were positive though so that's good to know.

    • +1

      The gov ones being given out now are nasal and very accurate, the previous oral ones some people and schools received are indeed shite

  • +2

    People still do those tests??

  • We tested positive with Panbio RATs but negative with the WA Govt free RATs. I wouldn't say it's useless but it's definitely not as sensitive as Panbio as we tried testing again the next day with the free RATs and it was positive.

    • but negative with the WA Govt free RATs.

      Which ones? there are a few types, and not all are suspect.

      • The free nasal RATs. Brand is MP?

      • Not really suspect, just less sensitive. The lollipop ones didn't pick up my infection until the day after the positive PCR, though that was still before I had any symptoms.

  • Also freely available in Perth Airport for those travelling through. There are a few bins throughout the terminals containing individually wrapped tests.

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