Photo by ThisisEngineering RAEng on Unsplash
Photo by ThisisEngineering RAEng on Unsplash
  • Private screening and diagnostic test lab PathCare says it can now test for Covid-19 for R995.
  • This is R400 cheaper than another private lab Lancet said it would charge.
  • PathCare said it is not certain whether medical aids will reimburse the cost as a benefit.
  • For more stories, go to the Business Insider South Africa homepage.

Private screening and diagnostic test lab PathCare says it can now test for Covid-19 for R995.

The private lab which runs screening and diagnostic tests nationwide announced on Tuesday that they would charge R995, applicable to all patients.

This comes in at R400 cheaper than what Lancet, another private lab in South Africa, said it would charge potential patients to test for the novel coronavirus.

Read more: A coronavirus test will set you back R1 400 – and medical aid may only pay if you have it

PathCare said it is not certain whether medical aids will reimburse the cost as a benefit, and it may thus be paid from medical savings accounts or the patient may be liable for the cost.

PathCare said it requires the following before a test:

  • A completed Person Under Investigation (PUI) form and contact line list, which can be obtained from the NICD website which needs to be emailed to the NICD at ncov@nicd.ac.za before being submitted to PathCare.
  • Patients must complete a PathCare request form with either “COVID-19” or “SARS-CoV-2” as the requested test.
  • A patient’s mobile phone number, a second contact number (mobile number preferably) and physical address are included on the form as this will be necessary for contact tracing.

They urge people who think they have the virus to phone doctors, rather than come into their lab centres unannounced. 

Doctors referring patients directly to a PathCare lab for testing have been requested to ensure that the patient is supplied with a surgical mask, which is to be worn before the patient enters the depot in order to protect vulnerable patients and staff.   

Both Discovery Health and Momentum have said they will cover the costs of your diagnosis and treatment – but for confirmed Covid-19 cases only.

Discovery has indicated that if a test is positive, it will pay for everything from a special Covid-19 benefit. If it is negative, if will come out of the "savings account" members can use for day-to-day medical expenses.

Momentum said it will cover the costs of diagnosis and treatment, but for confirmed Covid-19 cases only. 

Follow these steps to minimise your chances of contracting the novel coronavirus:

Regularly wash your hands, thoroughly.

Don’t touch your eyes, nose, and mouth.

Reconsider travel, especially to countries where outbreaks of the virus have been reported.

Seek out credible sources of information, such as the WHO; misinformation is prevalent.

Who should be tested?

People who contract the Covid-19 virus may take anywhere from one to 14 days to develop symptoms.

The warning signs are acute or severe respiratory illnesses with a fever of 38°C or higher (or a history of fever) and a cough.

Anyone with a documented travel history to any of the countries where there is local transmission of Covid-19 within 14 days before symptoms started, or who has had close physical contact with a person who has Covid-19 while they showed symptoms is considered to be at higher risk.

Contact numbers

Doctors and patients are urged to contact the NICD directly on their hotline if they want testing to be done at the NICD, via 082 883 9920.


Latest update: Covid-19 update: a SA military flight has left for Wuhan to repatriate South Africans

More on office hygiene - here.

More on hand hygiene - here.  

Receive a daily update on your cellphone with all our latest news: click here.

Also from Business Insider South Africa: