SARS-CoV-2 continues to develop new, increasingly infectious variants including delta and omicron. We evaluated the efficacy of the Abbott BinaxNOW Rapid Antigen Test against Reverse Transcription PCR (RT-PCR) in 1,054 pediatric participants presenting to a high-volume Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) testing site while the delta variant was predominant. Both tests utilized anterior nares swabs. Participants were grouped by COVID-19 exposure and symptom status. 5.2% of samples tested positive by RT-PCR for SARS-CoV-2. For all participants, sensitivity of the BinaxNOW was 92.7% (95% CI 82.4%–98.0%), and specificity was 98.0% (95% CI 97.0%–98.8%). For symptomatic participants, positive predictive value (PPV) was 72.7% (95% CI 54.5%–86.7%) and negative predictive value (NPV) was 99.2% (95% CI 98.2%–100%). Among asymptomatic participants, PPV was 71.4% (95% CI 53.7%–85.4%) and NPV was 99.7% (95% CI 99.0%–100%). Our reported sensitivity and NPV are higher than other pediatric studies, potentially because of higher viral load from the delta variant, but specificity and PPV are lower. IMPORTANCE The BinaxNOW rapid antigen COVID-19 test had a sensitivity of nearly 92% in both symptomatic and asymptomatic children when performed at a high-throughput setting during the more transmissible delta variant dominant period. The test may play an invaluable role in asymptomatic screening and keeping children safe in school.
- pediatric rapid antigen testing
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Microbiology (medical)
- Infectious Diseases
- Immunology and Microbiology(all)
- Cell Biology